Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) chief Scott Pruitt is starting to grapple with a class of chemicals used in manufacturing that has been found in drinking water in recent years. 

Pruitt convened a summit this week with state officials, industry representatives, environmental advocates and others to discuss the presence of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in the water supply. He labeled the issue a “national priority” and promised certain steps toward potentially regulating the chemicals’ presence in water.

Among other steps, Pruitt said EPA would formally consider whether to set national limits on the drinking water concentration of two of the thousands of chemicals in the family: perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS).

The chemical industry even endorsed the actions, though cautioned that the EPA has to use “sound science” as it moves forward.

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