Maine Committee on Environment and Natural Resources Will Hold Hearing on April 26, 2023, on PFAS Legislation
Maine enacted An Act To Stop Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances Pollution in July 2021. Under the bill, manufacturers of products with intentionally added per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) were required to report the presence of the intentionally added PFAS in those products to the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (MDEP) beginning January 1, 2023. As reported in our February 17, 2023, memorandum, on February 14, 2023, MDEP announced a much anticipated proposed rule intended to provide additional guidance on the notification requirements and sales prohibitions. The Maine Board of Environmental Protection (MBEP) held a public hearing on April 20, 2023, on the proposed rule. Comments on the proposed rule are due to MDEP on May 19, 2023, by 5:00 p.m. (EDT). On April 26, 2023, the Maine Joint Standing Committee on Environment and Natural Resources will hold a hearing on the following bills:
- An Act to Support Manufacturers Whose Products Contain PFAS (LD 217): This bill is a concept draft that would require the development and implementation of a program to support manufacturers whose products contain PFAS;
- An Act to Establish Statewide Standards for PFAS (LD 304): This bill is a concept draft that would establish statewide standards for testing and acceptable levels of PFAS;
- An Act to Clarify the Laws to Combat PFAS Contamination (LD 1214): The bill would amend “An Act To Stop Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances Pollution.” Amendments include excluding degradation by products of PFAS from the definition of intentionally added PFAS; redefining PFAS as “a group of synthetic perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances that contain at least 2 sequential fully fluorinated carbon atoms, excluding polymers, gases and volatile liquids”; and extending the reporting deadline from January 1, 2023, to January 1, 2024;
- An Act to Exempt Some Businesses from Certain Laws Relating to PFAS in Accordance with the Size of the Business (LD 1273): The bill would exempt businesses with fewer than ten employees or that have less than $1,000,000 in annual revenue from the requirement to test products for PFAS; and
- An Act to Amend the Laws Relating to the Prevention of PFAS Pollution and to Provide Additional Funding (LD 1537): The bill would amend “An Act To Stop Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances Pollution.” Amendments include extending the reporting deadline from January 1, 2023, to October 1, 2023; clarifying the packaging exemption; and excluding manufacturers with less than $20,000,000 in national annual sales of products from the reporting requirements.
Several of the bills are intended to address issues in the original legislation that MDEP is unable to address through regulation.