New Jersey Sues Polluters for Contaminating Tap Water with PFAS “Forever Chemicals” at Some of Highest Detected Levels in the World

WASHINGTON – The State of New Jersey today sued the manufacturer Solvay Specialty Polymers USA and other companies for contaminating drinking water and the environment for decades with PFAS “forever chemicals.” New Jersey is one of the few states in the nation to have adopted limits in drinking water on certain PFAS chemicals, which remain unregulated by the federal government.  

The following is a reaction by Erik D. Olson, Senior Strategic Director for Health with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC):

“Drinking water should be safe from toxic forever chemicals linked to cancer and other devastating health effects. New Jersey regulators are right to take aggressive action against bad actors that for decades have escaped responsibility for their massive contamination by highly toxic chemicals, including one reportedly found at the highest level ever detected in the world.”

PFNA is the specific PFAS chemical regulated by New Jersey that is central to its lawsuit. For decades, industry has created thousands of different PFAS chemicals, many of which are found in the bodies of virtually every person in America. PFAS can be found in carpeting, food packaging, cookware, clothing, cosmetics, and even firefighting foam. PFAS chemicals do not break down easily, can spread quickly through the environment and are associated with a long list of harmful health effects, including cancer and developmental and reproductive harm. 

Additional Resources

Protect People from Toxic PFAS Chemicals (NRDC website) 

Managing PFAS As a Class (Anna Reade blog) 


The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) is an international nonprofit environmental organization with more than 3 million members and online activists. Since 1970, our lawyers, scientists, and other environmental specialists have worked to protect the world's natural resources, public health, and the environment. NRDC has offices in New York City, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Bozeman, MT, and Beijing. Visit us at and follow us on Twitter @NRDC