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PFAS and AFFF: Managing Risks amid Uncertainty

Presentation Date: August 31, 2021

Event: Montana Petroleum Association Annual Meeting, Billings, Montana

Per- and polyfluorinated compounds are widely used in commerce, but the properties that make PFAS useful have created unprecedented challenges when it comes to PFAS destruction/disposal and risk management. When compared to conventional environmental compounds of concern, PFAS are characterized by a unique combination of (1) complex chemistry, (2) extreme stability, (3) unique chemical transport properties. These challenges are exacerbated by state-level trends toward regulatory standards in the low part-per-trillion (ppt) range. At this stage, risk management decisions related to PFAS containing materials must be made within a stream of constantly changing information, in terms of both scientific understanding and regulatory framework.   

Originally presented at Montana Petroleum Association’s 2021 Annual Meeting, this presentation includes a PFAS overview, a survey of current regulatory trends, a discussion of currently available treatment/disposal options for PFAS, and insights into where things may be headed. We also touch on the risk management options and what companies can do to get ahead of the regulations. 

Click the play button below to watch a recording of the presentation. To view in full screen, click “Watch on YouTube.” 

To download a copy of the presentation, click here.

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Mitch Olson, PhD, PE
Lead Project Engineer, Fort Collins, CO

Dr. Olson is a Professional Engineer with 20 years of experience in environmental engineering. His background includes hands-on experience with complex environmental issues at multiple scales of application. Dr. Olson provides technical advisement on a variety of projects involving hydrocarbons, chlorinated solvents, and emerging contaminants, including perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).
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