PFAS: Contaminants of Emerging Concern

PFAS, or per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, are persistent synthetic compounds used in a variety of industrial and consumer product applications including non-stick cookware and firefighting foams. The presence of PFAS compounds in source water and drinking water is of increasing public concern due to their widespread use and environmental persistence. The resources included on this page provide information and guidance for water professionals challenged to address this emerging contaminant. 


Drinking Water Treatment for PFAS Selection Guide
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Source Water Evaluation Guide for PFAS
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Summary of PFAS Toxicological Research
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Purchase the complete set of all three reports

PFAS Case Studies

PFAS Case Studies, which provide details on water systems that are already responding to PFAS in drinking water. Each case study provides a background on the system and PFAS detections, details on the decision-making process, primary parameters of the treatment system design, and implementation costs. These case studies are intended to provide more background on treatment selection process.


Podcast: AWWA Regulatory Manager Discusses PFAS

Chris Moody, AWWA's regulatory manager, appeared on an episode of The Water Values Podcast to explore the many issues arising from per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) the episode can be downloaded here.

During the episode, Moody and host David McGimpsey discussed:

  • Background of PFAS
  • Status of PFAS regulations at the federal and state levels
  • Ways to mitigate PFAS
  • AWWA's involvement in PFAS regulation
  • Impacts of PFAS regulations on water rates/consumers

AWWA Briefing on PFAS


The AWWA Briefing on PFAS  provide information and guidance for water professionals challenged to address this emerging contaminant. 

AWWA Fact Sheets

PFAS Cycle Infographic- This infographic provides a visual representation of how PFAS cycle through the environment.
Summary of State Policies to Protect Drinking Water (November 2020)- Includes an overview of relevant state policies applicable to finished drinking water and relevant policies to protect present or future sources of drinking water. 
PFAS Treatment- Learn about treatment technologies recognized for providing demonstrated PFAS removal and the requirements for selecting among these technologies. 
PFAS Overview and Prevalence- A summary of PFAS history, use, health concerns, and presence in drinking water supplies. 
PFAS Monitoring, Sampling, Analysis- A summary of PFAS sampling protocols, EPA methods for PFAS analysis, and other analytical methods for PFAS monitoring. 
EPA Methods for PFAS in Drinking Water- A comparison of EPA methods for measuring PFAS occurrence in drinking water. 

Recent Journal AWWA Articles

To read the full text, click on the article links below, then login using the link in the upper right part of the page and following the “Login with AWWA” button. You must be a current member to read the full text.

2019 Water Quality and Technology Conference Presentations


Visit the WQTC19 proceedings for more presentations!


You may also search additional articles on this or other topics published in the Journal AWWA, Opflow and AWWA Water Science

AWWA Briefing on PFAS- Learn about the issues surrounding PFAS. 
AWWA Comments on Regulatory Determinations for PFAS- Learn about AWWA's recommendations to EPA regarding their proposed determination to regulate PFOA and PFOS and to consider other PFAS. 
AWWA Comments on Significant New Use Rule for Long-Chain PFAS- Learn about AWWA's recommendations to EPA regarding their supplemental proposal for the Significant New Use Rule. 
AWWA Comments on Addition of Certain Per and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances - Community Right To Know Act- Learn about AWWA's recommendations to EPA regarding their announcement to add certain PFAS to the Toxics Release Inventory. 
Letter to the Congressional Budget Office Regarding S1507- A preliminary analysis of how a new drinking water standard for PFAS will affect water systems. 
US Senate Targets PFAS- Learn about AWWA's joint recommendations with other water agencies to Congress regarding PFAS provisions in NDAA 2020. 
AWWA 2019 Testimony before Congress- Learn about AWWA's key messages to Congress during hearings on PFAS. 
2019 Hearing on PFAS by House Committee on Energy & Commerce- Learn more about the hearing on PFAS hosted by the House including testimony by AWWA and other experts. 
2019 Hearing on PFAS by Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works- Learn more about the hearing on PFAS hosted by the Senate including testimony by AWWA and other experts.
AWWA's Testimony to Senate Hearing on PFAS- AWWA's full testimony to the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works during the hearing on PFAS.
AWWA's Public Communications Toolkit- This kit contains all of AWWA's information on public communication, from talking points to Journal AWWA articles and presentations.'s Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances webpage

Technical Committee Engagement

AWWA members are recognized globally for their industry expertise and their generosity in sharing that expertise for a better world through better water. AWWA members participate in committee activities, developing conference programs, writing technical manuals, developing standards, creating educational content and contributing to AWWA publications. Committee members primarily interact through conference calls, emails, and face to face meetings at conferences and events. Access more information on volunteering for an AWWA committee.

The following committees are active in addressing PFAS issues:


Submit to the AWWA Water Science Topical Collection on PFAS
The purpose of this topical collection in AWWA Water Science is to capture the present state of the science on PFAS analytical methods and approaches to PFAS treatment and disposal.


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