Experts call for global ban on PFOA and PFOS

Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) should be banned across the world, according to a United Nations expert committee.

The two toxic fluorinated chemicals that have been used in firefighting foams and are a “major source of water pollution around the world,” according to global network of environmental health organisations, IPEN.  The UN committee recommends bans on export, import, and use of PFOS- and PFOA-containing foams in training and testing. In 2017, the committee concluded that PFOA was linked to, “high cholesterol, ulcerative colitis, thyroid disease, testicular cancer, kidney cancer and pregnancy-induced hypertension” and “presumed to be an immune hazard to humans.” Governments listed PFOS in the Stockholm Convention in 2009 but granted a time-unlimited exemption for use in firefighting foams. The UN expert committee agreed to recommend a five-year phase-out of PFOS use in firefighting foams with production prohibited.

Please sign in or register to continue.

Sign in to continue reading

Having trouble signing in?

Contact Customer Support at
or call 020 8267 8120

Subscribe for full access

or Register for limited access

Already subscribe but don't have a password?
Activate your web account here