Aqueous film-forming foam (AFFF) is a firefighting foam used to extinguish liquid-based fires—such as fires fueled by gasoline, oil, or chemicals. AFFF contains per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), which improve the foam’s heat resistance and ability to spread quickly over fire to suppress it. However, PFAS are toxic chemicals that can contaminate soil, surface water, groundwater, and drinking water if firefighting foam isn’t properly stored or cleaned up after use.
As directed by the Washington State Legislature, the Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) is developing a AFFF collection program to assist fire departments with the proper disposal of unused PFAS-containing foam. As part of the collection program, Ecology prepared an draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) to determine a feasible and safe way to dispose of AFFF.
As part of the DEIS process, Ecology evaluated five options for the AFFF Collection and Disposal Program. Those disposal options include Approved Hold in Place, Incineration, Solidification and Landfill, Class 1 Deep Well Injection, and No Action.
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