Beware of PFAS Legislation

Like a wolf in sheep’s clothing, the political drive to ban so-called “forever chemicals” is a back door way to give more power to the government and big corporations. It does so through burdensome regulation and establishing control over small producers through red tape. Manufacturers would be immediately affected. However, as we have seen in Maine, farmers are an easy second target.

House Bill 1649 is going through the New Hampshire House on Thursday April 11th. This bill will restrict the sale of products containing polyfluoroalkyl and perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and give $250,000 to the Department of Environmental Services. The funds would go towards the creation of a new employee tasked with PFAS ban enforcement and additional rulemaking.

On its surface, this is a simple ban to protect consumers coupled with bureaucratic bloat. In practice, the bill doesn’t actually address the problem that its sponsors claim exists and it sets our state on a worrisome path towards malevolence.

If this bill and its sponsors were actually worried about PFAS, they would be targeting contamination from manufacturing discharge, fire station tests of firefighting foam, military bases and stopping the “sludge” provided to farms from municipal water treatment facilities.

But, this bill does no such thing.

What this bill does is set the precedent that PFAS are a recognized problem in New Hampshire.

What this bill does is give an unelected government agency the money, authority, and approval to extend their reach.

Our Maine neighbors have more than 70 small farms in dire straits citing PFAS concerns. It’s a classic “breaking your leg and then wanting you to be grateful for the crutches” situation. Most of these farms were contaminated by a wastewater fertilizer called “sludge” that was provided and encouraged by Maine’s Environmental Services Agency. Now that same agency is conveniently the same entity that is swooping in offering to buy up “contaminated” farms at what they themselves declared to be a “market price.”

We need to fight PFAS legislation in New Hampshire. The ban fails to prevent anyone from consuming PFAS, if that is even a real concern. A ban costs taxpayers money. A ban negatively affects businesses. We see through what happened in Maine where such actions take us. Ultimately, it is yet another bold way to increase the size of the government.

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