New York Proposes New Drinking Water Standards

ALBANY, N.Y. – The New York State Department of Health today recommended new drinking water standards for PFOA and PFOS – two man-made chemicals linked to cancer and other health issues. If adopted, the newly recommended drinking water standard, at 10 parts per trillion (ppt) for PFOA and PFOS, would be the toughest in the nation.

However, more can still be done to protect New Yorkers’ drinking water quality. This includes lowering the standard to 2 ppt, establishing a combined standard for PFOS and PFOA (instead of setting individual limits for each), and regulating the entire group of PFAS chemicals, which likely pose similar dangers.

For more information, read NRDC’s health report analyzing the health risks associated with PFOA and PFOS exposure in drinking water, and NRDC expert blog: “NY Drinking Water Quality Council Recommends Regulating PFOA.”

A statement follows from Kimberly Ong, Senior Attorney at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC):

“If adopted, this would be the toughest drinking water standard for these dangerous chemicals in the nation. This is a big step in the right direction to protect the health and safety of New Yorkers – but there is no safe level of these chemicals in our water. The state can, and must, go even further.”


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.​