PFAS Monitoring by Public Water Systems in Oregon
Third Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR3)
Six PFAS compounds (PFOS, PFOA, PFNA, PFHxS, PFHpA, and PFBS ) were among the list of contaminants that public water systems were required to monitor for under the third Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR3). All public water systems nationwide serving more than 10,000 people and 800 representative systems serving 10,000 or fewer people monitored for these and other unregulated contaminants during a 12-month period from January 2013 through December 2015. In Oregon, 65 public water systems monitored for these PFAS contaminants and there were no detections reported.
Fifth Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR5)
EPA’s Fifth Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR5) requires sample collection and analysis for 29 PFAS compounds and lithium between 2023 and 2025. In Oregon, a total of 127 public water systems will be monitoring under UCMR5. OHA follows up with public water systems that have UCMR5 PFAS detections by providing information on how the results compare to state/federal health advisory levels and proposed regulations, reporting requirements to customers, and information on available funding to address the contaminant. More information about UCMR5 can be found on EPA’s website here: https://www.epa.gov/dwucmr/fifth-unregulated-contaminant-monitoring-rule
OHA PFAS Sampling Project
OHA conducted a PFAS drinking water monitoring project in 2021 through 2023 at public water systems in Oregon identified as at risk due to their proximity to a known or suspected PFAS use or contamination site. The purpose of this sampling project was to make sure customers are not being exposed to potentially harmful PFAS chemicals in their drinking water. The analysis was paid for through an EPA grant and was done at no cost to the water system. The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality lab analyzed 195 drinking water samples from 143 public water systems for 24 PFAS compounds using EPA Method 533. A list of the PFAS compounds included in Method 533 can be found here
under the “Method 533” column.
Proposed PFAS National Primary Drinking Water Regulation
On March 14, 2023, EPA released a proposed National Primary Drinking Water Regulation (NPDWR) for six PFAS chemicals. EPA is proposing to set a Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) of 4.0 parts per trillion (ppt) for PFOA and PFOS and a hazard index-based regulation method for four additional PFAS compounds: PFNA, PFHxS, PFBS, and HFPO-DA (commonly referred to as GenX chemicals). These chemicals are not currently regulated. Once final, both the MCL and hazard index will be legally enforceable levels, and if exceeded, the water system would be responsible for installing treatment or providing an alternate source of drinking water. More information about the proposed regulation can be found here: https://www.epa.gov/sdwa/and-polyfluoroalkyl-substances-pfas
Labs for PFAS Analysis in Drinking Water
OHA recommends public water systems that are interested in testing for PFAS in their drinking water use a lab that is accredited by the Oregon Environmental Laboratory Accreditation Program (ORELAP). See below for a list of ORELAP-accredited labs for the analysis of PFAS in drinking water:
For more information: