The Dangers of Synthetic Turf: PFAS Chemicals and Their Impact on Public Health

Growing Concerns over Health Risks of Synthetic Turf with ‘Forever Chemicals’

There is growing concern among communities across the United States about the safety of synthetic turf fields due to the presence of PFAS chemicals. These chemicals, which are linked to potential health risks, have been found in some synthetic turf installations.

While the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are taking steps to understand and limit PFAS exposure, the full impact on health remains uncertain. Despite these concerns, the synthetic turf industry continues to grow, with thousands of installations happening annually throughout the country.

Dr. Kyla Bennett, director of science policy for PEER, has raised valid concerns about the safety of synthetic turf fields. She questions why acres of plastic turf are being put down and used for athletic purposes, when there are concerns about the potential health risks associated with these materials.

The issue with synthetic turf containing PFAS chemicals is that as the fields wear down or are disposed of, these chemicals can leach into the environment, contaminating soil and water sources. With increasing awareness about the health effects of PFAS, it is likely that the full lifetime cost of artificial turf installations may come as a shock to the industry in terms of both environmental impact and public perception. Overall, there is a need for continued research and evaluation into the safety of synthetic turf fields due to concerns about PFAS chemicals and their potential health risks.

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