PFAS Information

Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl substances – known as PFAS – are a group of over 5,000 man-made chemicals that are commonly used in industry and have been used in consumer products since the 1940s due to their useful properties. They are widely used long-lasting chemicals that can be found in water, air, and food as well as in materials found in our homes or workplaces, including:

  • Drinking water – public drinking water systems/private drinking water wells.
  • Soil and water at/or near waste sites - at landfills, disposal sites, and hazardous waste sites such as those that fall under the federal Superfund and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act programs.
  • Fire extinguishing foam - in aqueous film-forming foams (or AFFFs) used to extinguish flammable liquid-based fires.  Such foams are used in training and emergency response events at airports, shipyards, military bases, firefighting training facilities, chemical plants, and refineries.
  • Manufacturing or chemical production facilities that produce or use PFAS – for example at chrome plating, electronics, and certain textile and paper manufacturers.
  • Food – fish caught from water contaminated by PFAS and dairy products from livestock exposed to PFAS.
  • Food packaging – grease-resistant paper, fast food containers/wrappers, microwave popcorn bags, pizza boxes, and candy wrappers.
  • Household products and dust – stain and water-repellent used on carpets, upholstery, clothing, and other fabrics; cleaning products; non-stick cookware; paints, varnishes, and sealants.
  • Personal care products – certain shampoos, dental floss, and cosmetics.
  • Biosolids – fertilizer from wastewater treatment plants that are used on agricultural lands can affect ground and surface water and animals that graze on the land.

Please visit the EPA PFAS Explained website to learn more. 

Please visit the City of Danbury Water Division website for water quality reports.