Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) published a Draft State of Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) Report and a Risk Management Scope for PFAS in the Canada Gazette on May 20, 2023. Both documents are open for a 60-day public comment period ending on July 19, 2023.
The class of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, referred to throughout these documents as PFAS, is based on the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) chemical definition, which is “fluorinated substances that contain at least one fully fluorinated methyl or methylene carbon atom (without any H/Cl/Br/I atom attached to it), that is, with a few noted exceptions, any chemical with at least a perfluorinated methyl group (–CF3) or a perfluorinated methylene group (–CF2–) is a PFAS” (OECD 2021). Approximately 4,700 PFAS have been identified to date.
The Draft State of PFAS Report is a qualitative assessment of the fate, sources, occurrence, and potential impacts of these substances on the environment and human health. The Risk Management Scope for PFAS outlines the proposed risk management options under consideration, in particular Regulatory and/or non-regulatory controls to minimize environmental and human exposure to the class of PFAS from firefighting foams, gathering information to identify and prioritize options for minimizing exposure to PFAS, and aligning with actions in other jurisdictions where appropriate.