COLORADO SPRINGS — Governor Jared Polis signed a bill into law on Friday that will protect people and the environment by restricting the sale of eight consumer product categories containing dangerously toxic PFAS chemicals.
PFAS (perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl chemicals), also known as “forever chemicals,” are chemicals that do not naturally break down. They are added to everyday consumer products and have been linked to cancer, hormone disruption, organ damage, and reproductive health problems.
HB22-1345 will phase out PFAS chemicals in carpets, furniture, cosmetics, juvenile products, some types of food packaging, and the fluids used including oil and gas production. It will also require any cookware with PFAS to be labeled.
The bill initially started when 11-year old Madhvi Chittoor met with State Representative Lisa Cutter in the summer of 2021 and discussed the impacts of PFAS on human health and the environment. Madhvi told Representative Cutter, “When all of our aquifers are polluted, where will we get our drinking water from? When our waterways like ponds, lakes, rivers are polluted, where will the fish live? What water will the animals drink? What water will the farmers use to grow our crops?”
Representative Cutter was moved and convinced by Madhvi’s determination and committed to bring forward legislation addressing PFAS contamination, working with groups like Earthjustice, Sierra Club, and Conservation Colorado to craft the language.
The bill passed the House in early May, and the senate approved amendments on May 11, sending the bill to Governor Polis’s desk. With his signature, the procedures set in place by HB22-1345 can start to protect Coloradans and our valuable natural resources.
“I’m thrilled Colorado leaders moved decisively to better protect the state, especially those most vulnerable, from the health impacts of these toxic chemicals,” said Rebecca Curry, Colorado policy counsel at Earthjustice. “This bill also helps safeguard our state’s precious water supplies from these forever chemicals as we endure the effects of the worst drought conditions in centuries.”