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September 25, 2023

ECHO Releases Updated Version of PFAS Analytic Tools

Lynn L. Bergeson Carla N. Hutton

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced on September 21, 2023, that the Office of Compliance within the Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance has released an updated version of the Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) Analytic Tools. The tools are hosted on EPA’s Enforcement and Compliance History Online (ECHO) website. EPA states that the data visualization tools enable users to evaluate what is known about PFAS manufacturing, releases, and occurrence in communities across the country. According to EPA, the PFAS Analytic Tools have been used by researchers, community organizations, and enforcement and compliance assurance staff to learn more about PFAS.

Since January 2023, EPA has added the following sources to the PFAS Analytic Tools:

  • More than ten years of PFAS emissions data from the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Reporting Program;
  • More than 100,000 recent fifth Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR 5) public drinking water system monitoring results along with additional data elements collected (e.g., potential sources that may have impacted drinking water). EPA states that it will release new results quarterly and add them to the PFAS Analytic Tools until completion of UCMR 5 data reporting in 2026;
  • Tens of thousands of environmental monitoring samples, including studies from EPA and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) (e.g., 2018-19 National Rivers and Streams Assessment);
  • Hundreds of new waste manifests that have been identified as likely to have PFAS constituents;
  • Dozens of initial incident reports sent to EPA’s National Response Center for releases likely containing PFAS;
  • Discharge monitoring reports for close to 100 new facilities with PFAS monitoring in wastewater effluent; and
  • New data on federal sites with known or suspected PFAS detections and Superfund sites with PFAS detections.

EPA states that it will add the Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) PFAS data for reporting year 2022 to the Toxics Releases tab in fall 2023. Frequently asked questions are available on the ECHO website.