GZA GeoEnvironmental, Inc.
Ms. Megan Kemp is an environmental and occupational epidemiologist with a wide range of experience in epidemiology, toxicology, database management, exposure assessment, and risk assessment of airborne chemicals. She specializes in occupational epidemiology, quantitative exposure reconstruction, and human health risk assessment. Ms. Kemp earned a B.A. in Biology from Emory University and a MSPH in Environmental and Occupational Health and Epidemiology from the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University. Her thesis work involved analyzing pulmonary function data and evaluating occupational, recreation, and household exposure routes for workers and household contacts at five sites in the U.S. that processed asbestos-containing vermiculite ore from Libby, Montana. More recently, she has been involved in researching, reconstructing dose and exposure, and assessing risk to consumers, communities, and workers exposed to a variety of chemical and biological materials. Her experience includes investigating the health effects of exposure to a variety of compounds, including asbestos, vermiculite, PFAS, hydrogen sulfide, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, diacetyl, and radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RFEMF).
PFAS Toxicology – What is Driving the Variation in Drinking Water Standards
Recently, a growing public awareness of PFAS detection in U.S. drinking water has hastened demand for enforceable PFAS drinking water standards. Although the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has considered risk-based standards for the two most well-known PFAS, perfluorooactanoic acid (PFOA) and perflouorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS), individual states have largely been left to develop and enforce PFAS standards or guidelines for their drinking water. As a result, there is significant variation across State and Federal agencies with respect to which PFAS are regulated and at what levels. This wide variation is sowing confusion among the general population and within industry and is reflective of discordant risk assessment principles and practices utilized by differing regulatory agencies. Here, we present the primary considerations and variables driving uncertainty in the risk assessments of individual PFAS and identify key toxicological factors that should be considered by agencies when setting general guidelines or enforceable maximum contaminant levels (MCLs).