Organised by: Global Water Research Coalition, Water Research Australia (WRA) and Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA)
Per- and Poly-FluoroAlkyl Substances (PFAS) are hydrocarbon molecules with fluorine in place of most or all of the hydrogen atoms normally found on the hydrocarbon backbone.
PFAS are highly water soluble and resistant to degradation and hence widely present in the environment. Historically, the PFAS with the highest production volumes were perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA).
In the early 2000s concerns over possible health and environmental effects resulted in progressive restrictions on use. Under pressure from the US EPA, 3M had ceased production of both PFOS and PFOA by 2002, however other manufacturers continued to make PFOA. A US EPA spokesman at the time cited evidence of prolonged environmental persistence, detection of PFOS in human and wildlife tissues around the world, and demonstrated toxicity in rodent studies as factors which led to the conclusion that the chemical could potentially pose a risk to human health and the environment over the long term. While production and use of PFAS in Japan, Western Europe and the US has fallen sharply since 2000, there has been a rapid increase in production in China, India, Poland and Russia.
Removal of PFAS by conventional water treatment processes is problematic. The properties that make these compounds useful means they are relatively hydrophilic, resistant to biotransformation and chemically inert, which significantly reduces effectiveness of some water treatment technologies.
This workshop is aimed at bringing GRWC members, partners and experts together to discuss research activities and research collaboration opportunities and share their knowledge, facts and collaborate on common tasks in this field.
*This workshop is by invitation only