Fead publishes scientific study on the presence of PFAS in waste

FEAD has announced the publication of our scientific article titled ‘The Presence of PFAS in Wastes and Related Implications on the Current and Proposed European Regulatory Framework: A Systematic Critical Review’ in Detritus, the journal for Circular Economy and Sustainable Management of Residues.
Tim Reckmann, pixelio.de
Tim Reckmann, pixelio.de

This comprehensive study was commissioned by FEAD in response to the ‘PFAS ban’ proposal submitted by several Member States to ECHA in 2023. It was conducted in collaboration with the University of Padova and sheds light on the presence of Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in various waste streams (paper, cardboard, textile, and metal) and its implications on European legal mechanisms.

The article, authored by the late Alberto Pivato, Giovanni Beggio, Stefano Maggi, Francesco Marrone, Tiziano Bonato, Federico Peres, Wei Peng, and Maria Cristina Lavagnolo, represents the culmination of months of research. It provides a state-of-the-art review of PFAS and examines the potential impact of proposed restrictions under REACH on the circular economy. For this study, nearly 5000 single concentration values from various waste streams were collected, of which only a few cases exceeded the considered limit. The instances where this limit was surpassed ranged from less than 1% for paper and cardboard waste to 8% for textiles and leather waste.

This research is particularly significant as the use of PFAS is widespread, yet relevant knowledge on its impact in waste management is scarce. There is a pressing need for understanding and managing PFAS, especially considering the recent restriction on the placing on the market of food contact packaging containing the chemical above certain thresholds, which was agreed between the Council and the Parliament for the new Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation.

For this reason, the publication of this article marks an important milestone in the ongoing efforts to understand and address the challenges posed by PFAS contamination in wastes.

Paolo Campanella, FEAD Secretary General commented: ‘This article is the result of months of collaborative effort between researchers and FEAD. FEAD is proud to have been a part of this initiative, which contributes valuable insights into the complex issue of PFAS in wastes.’

Read the article


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