New Jersey Appellate Court Rejects Challenge to State’s Drinking Water and Groundwater Rules for PFAS

A New Jersey state appellate court affirmed the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s (DEP) rule amendments setting maximum contaminant levels (MCLs) for PFOA and PFOS in New Jersey drinking water and groundwater. The appellants argued that the DEP failed to comply with New Jersey’s Administrative Procedure Act (APA) because it provided an insufficient cost analysis and gave cursory and dismissive responses to comments. Appellants also argued that the DEP adopted standards for wastewater without an approved laboratory testing method for quantifying PFOA and PFOS in wastewater. The appellate court held that the DEP complied with the APA in its proposal and adoption of the rule amendments. The court also held that in the absence of federal analytical standards, the DEP was permitted to prescribe more than one approved testing method for contaminants.

August 23, 2023 | In Re Appeal of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s June 1, 2020, Adopted Amendments, No. A-0307-20 (N.J. Super. Ct. App. Div.).

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