From September 19 to 23, 2016 an UN expert committee decided that perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA, CAS 335-67-1) warrants global action under the Stockholm Convention, a global treaty to protect human health and the environment from persistent organic pollutants (POPs). The draft risk profile on PFOA was discussed by the Persistent Organic Pollutants Review Committee (POPRC) during its 12th meeting in Rome, Italy. PFOA was linked to “a considerable number of health effects” such as high cholesterol, ulcerative colitis, thyroid disease, testicular cancer, kidney cancer, pregnancy-induced hypertension, altered reproductive or developmental effects, endocrine disruption, impaired neurodevelopment, and immunotoxicity. Furthermore, PFOA, its salts and related substances are persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic to humans and animals. As a consequence of this decision, PFOA will now move to the next evaluation phase including a search for substitutions, risk management options and a formal recommendation to the POPRC about the listing of PFOA in the treaty.

In Europe, PFOA ammonium salt (CAS 3825-26-1) is authorized as additive in plastic food contact materials for repeated use (FPF reported). PFOA and its salts are also identified as Substance of Very High Concern (SVHC) under REACH (FPF reported). In 2009, the Stockholm Convention already listed perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS, CAS 1763-23-1) and its related chemicals as POPs (FPF reported).

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Stockholm Convention (September 19-23, 2016). “Twelfth meeting of the Persistent Organic Pollutants Review Committee (POPRC.12).

Stockholm Convention (June 2016). “Draft risk profile: pentadecafluorooctanoic acid (CAS No: 335-67-1, PFOA, perfluorooctanoic acid), its salts and PFOA-related compounds.” (pdf)

IPEN (September 23, 2016). “Teflon Chemical” (PFOA) warrants global action.

FPF Dossier (July 2016). “Per- and polyfluoralkyl substances (PFASs).” (pdf)