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​EPCOR is committed to providing its customers with clean, reliable water, conducting more than 300,000 water quality tests every year. A critical part of our strategy to deliver on this promise is continuously striving to increase our understanding of manmade Polyfluoroalkyl and Perfluoroalkyl ​substances (PFAS) and their potentially hazardous impacts on our health.

Understanding PFAS

There are thousands of known PFAS substances found in daily life including food-handling materials, non-stick cookware, medical devices, personal care products, and even construction equipment. Because PFAS is found in so many everyday products, measuring the harmfulness of these chemicals is difficult and not yet fully understood. As the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other federal regulators continue to research these chemicals and determine a national standard for the safe level of exposure to these chemicals, EPCOR continues its role in testing for PFAS and finding ways to mitigate PFAS levels when found in drinking water sources.  

EPA Health Advisory Levels​

In late 2018, we detected trace amounts of PFAS in a small number of water supply wells. Out of an abundance of caution, EPCOR made the immediate decision to take these wells offline and limit their use for the city’s drinking water supply. 

​While there is no current EPA requirement to treat PFAS substances, the EPA’s previous recommended health advisory level is that concentrations of two individual PFAS contaminants – PFOA and PFOS – should not exceed 70 parts per trillion (ppt), combined. To put that into perspective, one part per trillion is the equivalent of a single second in 31,500 years. The EPA determined that its recommended level provides even the most sensitive populations with a margin of protection from a lifetime of exposure to PFOA and PFOS from drinking water.

​In late 2022, the EPA issued a proposed recommendation that concentrations of two individual PFAS contaminants, PFOA and PFOS, in drinking water should not exceed 4 parts per trillion (ppt), combined. This is the lowest level of PFAS that current science and technology can detect and measure. If this new standard were to become effective, all water providers in the United States will be required to meet the new standard within three years from that point.

Our Actions

At EPCOR, we have already been monitoring all of our water sources for PFAS and developing a plan to ensure that all of our water sources will meet newer, more stringent requirements as they become the new standard. This includes infrastructure improvements to add treatment processes that remove PFAS from water, ​examining the impact this will have on the cost of delivering your service, and identifying grants and other potential funding sources to help offset those necessary costs.​​

​Today, more than 90% of our 82 wells either show no indication of these manmade chemicals or measure at very low levels in Clovis and in Edgewood, there are none. Wells that have indicated the presence of PFAS are not currently in operation. We continue to carefully monitor all water sources.

Today, we provide water from more than 100 wells and other water sources. More than 95% of our water sources across Arizona show no indication of these manmade chemicals or measure at very low levels below the EPA’s 4 ppt recommendation. Wells where PFAS has measured above 4 ppt are not in operation and are irrigation wells that are not part of the drinking water system. In the instance that a well with low levels of PFAS are necessary to ensure service, when available water is blended and diluted with water from another source. We are actively developing a treatment approach to treat for PFAS and continue to carefully monitor all water sources.

​Read​ the most current report on the quality of your drinking water.​