ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Almost half a million New Yorkers are reportedly drinking PFAS-polluted water, after the new EPA health advisory was released. Advocates urged Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Department of Health (DOH) to bring New York’s drinking water standards on toxic polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAs) in line with the new Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) health guidelines. They called for current standards on two PFAS chemicals, PFOA and PFOS, and proposed standards on 23 additional PFAS to be lowered to as close to zero as possible. This would ensure that New Yorkers would be directly notified about what’s in their water, and that dangerous contamination would be eliminated.

New York’s maximum contaminant levels (MCLs) for perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) currently allow up to 10 parts per trillion of each of these chemicals in drinking water. Those levels are 10 times higher than what EPA now says is safe. According to a review of a selection of statewide testing data, at least hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers have PFOA, PFOS, and/or other PFAs in their water, but at levels below the current or proposed standards.