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EGLE expands PFAS testing to include surface water, groundwater, wastewater and soil

New PFAS testing equipment like that at EGLE laboratory.New equipment at the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy's laboratory will expand testing for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) to surface water, ground water, wastewater, and soil (called environmental samples). The lab had only been testing drinking water onsite for PFAS.

The new equipment will also test for more chemicals -- 30 so-called analytes with more to come in the future -- and reliably report results with low detection limits. The drinking water method has only tested for 18 analytes.

The new instrument is a better, more powerful instrument for the analysis of environmental samples and also allows EGLE staffers to have an instrument dedicated to and available for environmental analyses, notes Kirby Shane, the lab's director.

Since May, lab staffers have been developing the method for the new testing. They expect that to be complete by the end of the year. Tests using the new equipment will typically be done on State of Michigan work from EGLE or other government agencies and should start in 2022, after training and protocols are in place.

EGLE director Liesl Clark visited the lab recently to recognize the work of staffers there who kept sampling, testing and results moving forward during COVID-19.

Photo caption: New PFAS testing equipment like that at EGLE laboratory.

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