PFAS removal

May 22, 2024

EPA adds nine PFAS compounds to the list of “hazardous constituents” and grant programs begin to trickle in.


On May 21, 2024, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced $25 million for states and territories to invest in clean and safe drinking water. This grant funding will benefit underserved, small, and disadvantaged communities by upgrading infrastructure to comply with the Safe Drinking Water Act, reducing exposure to Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS), removing lead sources, and addressing additional local drinking water challenges.

Purpose of the EPA Safe Drinking Water Grants

EPA’s grant funding can support various projects to help communities address drinking water concerns, from household water quality testing to monitoring for drinking water contaminants, including PFAS, and identifying and replacing lead service lines. Funds may also support efforts to build the technical, financial, and managerial abilities of a water system’s operations and staff. Infrastructure projects—from transmission, distribution, and storage—that support drinking water quality improvements are also eligible for grant funding.

The FY 2024 Consolidated Appropriations Act updated the eligible uses of the funds to include “one or more owners of drinking water wells that are not public water systems or connected to a public water system” as eligible beneficiaries of the FY 2024 SUDC grant funds awarded to states and territories.

The update allows FY 2024 SUDC funds to benefit owners of private drinking water wells for appropriate projects under the SUDC program. Because this is a new eligibility for the grant program, the EPA anticipates releasing updates with additional details to the grant Implementation Document later this year. The private well eligibility is authorized for the FY 2024 funding for states and territories only. Future Congressional action will determine eligibility for future funding.

Funding by State and Territory

The Small, Underserved, and Disadvantaged Community Grant Program, established under the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation (WIIN) Act, awards funding to states and territories non-competitively. EPA awards funding to states based on an allocation formula that includes factors for populations below the poverty level, small water systems, and underserved communities.

Small, Underserved, and Disadvantaged Communities (SUDC) Grant Allotments for States and Territories Based on FY 2024 Appropriations of $25 Million are in the Table Below

State/Territory 2024 Allotment   State/Territory 2024 Allotment
Alabama $369,000 Montana $326,000
Alaska $571,000 Nebraska $284,000
American Samoa $141,000 Nevada $293,000
Arizona $490,000 New Hampshire $259,000
Arkansas $342,000 New Jersey $406,000
California $1,624,000 New Mexico $393,000
Colorado $462,000 New York $1,047,000
Connecticut $273,000 North Carolina $679,000
Delaware $195,000 North Dakota $210,000
D.C. $151,000 North Mariana Islands $142,000
Florida $961,000 Ohio $609,000
Georgia $664,000 Oklahoma $492,000
Guam $135,000 Oregon $425,000
Hawaii $170,000 Pennsylvania $799,000
Idaho $316,000 Puerto Rico $478,000
Illinois $702,000 Rhode Island $168,000
Indiana $422,000 South Carolina $375,000
Iowa $348,000 South Dakota $240,000
Kansas $381,000 Tennessee $403,000
Kentucky $340,000 Texas $1,821,000
Louisiana $641,000 Utah $291,000
Maine $238,000 U.S. Virgin Islands $138,000
Maryland $305,000 Vermont $210,000
Massachusetts $348,000 Virginia $469,000
Michigan $650,000 Washington $566,000
Minnesota $382,000 West Virginia $315,000
Mississippi $420,000 Wisconsin $439,000
Missouri $524,000 Wyoming $238,000


Additional Resources for Safe Drinking Water Related to PFAS:


Posted by Diane Samuels at 6:00 am

July 19, 2023

PFAS Treatment to Remove or Destroy Forever Chemicals
PFAS treatments are available now, with more options undergoing field testing.


To a wastewater treatment engineer, at least during workdays, it seems like everyone is talking about forever chemicals, all of the time. There’s a good reason for that, because the huge group of man-made chemicals has climbed in priority to be at the top of most wastewater treatment regulatory considerations. Forever chemicals are also known as per and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and have rapidly become the latest of the emerging contaminants in drinking water to be treated. So, while there is still a lot of toxicology research to do,  PFAS destruction and even which PFAS actually needs to be addressed, there is very little doubt regarding the future need to treat PFAS in landfill leachate and other wastewaters. Everyone is in agreement, the environment needs to be protected from forever chemicals.

PFAS chemicals can withstand high heat without becoming unstable as well as repelling oil and water, making them ideal for inclusion in fire-fighting foam, lining non-stick pans, or water resistant clothing. But unfortunately, PFAS can persist in the environment – water, fish, humans, etc. – for a long time. So, having efficient and cost-effective methods of treating wastewater, drinking water, bio-solids, etc., to reduce/remove PFAS is becoming increasingly important. Luckily, some traditional and very available treatment methods are effective at treating PFAS as well as some newer, non-traditional treatment methods that appear to be promising.

One effective management technology is using deep injection wells to store the PFAS contaminated wastewater deep, far below drinking water sources and within high total dissolved solids groundwater. Deep injection wells are only allowed where the deep geology and subsurface conditions can allow for the PFAS wastewater to be contained where it is injected.

Additional management options are granular activated carbon (GAC) or ion exchange (IX), which are adsorption treatment methods that use a media, through which the PFAS contaminated wastewater can pass, and the charged PFAS molecules become bound up in the opposite charged GAC or IX media.

Reverse osmosis (RO) and foam fractionation (FF) treatment methods use separation, either through very small pores in a membrane (RO) or applying aeration to create a PFAS concentrated foam (FF), to allow the treated, cleaner water to discharge the treatment process and the concentrate (RO) or foamate (FF) is left and can be dealt with more efficiently, because after treatment the concentrate/foamate is a much smaller volume than the original wastewater flow.

These PFAS management methods simply move the PFAS chemicals out of the way and don’t actually destroy the PFAS. PFAS destruction generally requires more effort and cost because high pressure and/or high heat are required to break the carbon – fluorine (C-F) bonds. A regenerative thermal oxidizer (RTO) or supercritical water oxidation (SCWO) are PFAS destruction methods that can be employed. An RTO typically operates at high temperature (e.g., 1,800 F) and SCWO utilizes both high temperature (>705 F) and high pressure (>3,210 psi) within a process to, again, break the C-F bonds. Electrocoagulation, advanced oxidation processes and plasma are also treatment methods that could be employed to destroy PFAS.

These are just a few of the many PFAS management and destruction options. It can be hard to decide what’s right for your project. That’s where SCS can help. We’re technology agnostic – so you can trust our recommendations are appropriate for your project and goals. Contact us today to learn more about what’s possible.


Samuel CookeAbout the Author: Sam Cooke, PE, CEM, MBA, is a Vice President and our expert on Industrial Wastewater Pretreatment. He has nearly three decades of professional and project management experience in engineering with a concentration in environmental and energy engineering. Mr. Cooke works within SCS’s Liquids Management initiative to provide services to our clients nationwide.


Additional PFAS Management and Treatment Resources:



Posted by Diane Samuels at 6:00 am

May 4, 2020

In this Waste Today article, Sam Cooke discusses the factors, treatment options,  analytical methods,  and identifying PFAS sources to most effectively reduce the concentrations of ammonia and PFAS in landfill leachate.

Reducing these concentrations help meet discharge permit requirements for direct discharge of treated leachate to surface waters and to meet publicly owned treatment works (POTW) discharge permit standards.

Sam points out that accomplishing ammonia and PFAS reduction with established wastewater treatment technologies works, but the right treatment depends on each site’s specific parameters. He suggests conducting bench-scale and pilot-scale testing for any feasible nitrogen removal or treatment system.  Testing the wastewater helps to identify any changes in the concentration of nitrogen compounds. Thus, necessary changes to the treatment processes, such as additional aeration or chemical additions are easier to identify and less costly to implement.

Best practices for treating ammonia in landfill leachate, Waste Today

About the Author: Mr. Cooke, PE, CEM, MBA, is a Vice President and our expert on Industrial Waste Pretreatment. He has nearly three decades of professional and project management experience in engineering with a concentration in environmental and energy engineering. Mr. Cooke works within SCS’s Liquids Management initiative to provide services to our clients nationwide.

Learn more about liquids management at landfills.






Posted by Diane Samuels at 6:00 am