Arlington, VA – The National Waste & Recycling Association (NWRA) expresses its thanks to U.S. Rep. Mike Thompson (D-CA) for his letter to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) calling on the agency to treat privately owned landfills the same as publicly owned landfills in its proposed regulation of PFAS under CERCLA. In March, the EPA said it may choose not to take CERCLA enforcement action against publicly owned and operated landfills.
In his letter to EPA Administrator Michael Regan, Congressman Thompson said, “I write regarding equal treatment for publicly and privately owned/operated municipal solid waste landfills in EPA’s proposed regulation of PFAS chemicals under CERCLA.” He went on to state that “[n]early half of municipal solid waste facilities in the U.S. are privately-owned" and noted “[t]here does not appear to be any public benefit to regulating public and private landfills differently.”
“We appreciate the support from Congressman Thompson and his letter to Administrator Regan,” said NWRA President and CEO Darrell Smith. “NWRA has consistently sought relief from CERCLA liability for PFAS at landfills and it would make no sense for the EPA to conduct enforcement at landfills differently based upon whether they are privately or publicly owned.”
NWRA along with 30 other associations sent a letter in April to Senate Environment and Public Works Chairman Tom Carper (D-DE) and Ranking Member Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) urging that any legislation on PFAS chemicals that the EPW Committee considers include a specific provision to ensure that “passive receivers” of PFAS including landfills and other essential public services are granted a narrow exemption from liability under CERCLA.