September 16, 2016

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Geosyntec Co-Authors Article on Removal Methods for Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl in Water

Rula Deeb (California) and Elisabeth Hawley (California), along with colleagues at UCLA and Caltech, were published in Environmental Engineering Science, the official journal of The Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors and a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers, Volume 33, Issue 9, September 1, 2016.

The article is entitled "Degradation and Removal Methods for Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances in Water" and it discusses elevated levels of perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) in drinking water can persist in water supplies for long periods and present an important health risk for millions of Americans, from hormone suppression to potentially cancer. A comprehensive review of the latest research on innovative and cost-effective ways to remove or destroy PFAS from drinking water, groundwater, and wastewater. The free article is available on the Environmental Engineering Science website until October 10, 2016.

"This an important and timely contribution that will help protect the health and well-being of individuals everywhere," says Domenico Grasso, PhD, Editor-in-Chief of Environmental Engineering Science and Provost & Professor, University of Delaware, Newark.


Several perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) have been identified as chemicals of concern in the environment due to their persistence, global ubiquity, and classification as reproductive and developmental toxicants, endocrine disrupters, and possible carcinogens. Multiple PFASs are often found together in the environment due to product manufacturing methods and abiotic and biotic transformations. Treatment methods are needed to effectively sequester or destroy a variety of PFASs from groundwater, drinking water, and wastewater. This review presents a comprehensive summary of several categories of treatment approaches: (1) sorption using activated carbon, ion exchange, or other sorbents, (2) advanced oxidation processes, including electrochemical oxidation, photolysis, and photocatalysis, (3) advanced reduction processes using aqueous iodide or dithionite and sulfite, (4) thermal and nonthermal destruction, including incineration, sonochemical degradation, sub- or supercritical treatment, microwave-hydrothermal treatment, and high-voltage electric discharge, (5) microbial treatment, and (6) other treatment processes, including ozonation under alkaline conditions, permanganate oxidation, vitamin-B12 and Ti(III) citrate reductive defluorination, and ball milling. Discussion of each treatment technology, including background, mechanisms, advances, and effectiveness, will inform the development of cost-effective PFAS remediation strategies based on environmental parameters and applicable methodologies. Further optimization of current technologies to analyze and remove or destroy PFASs below regulatory guidelines is needed. Due to the stability of PFASs, a combination of multiple treatment technologies will likely be required to effectively address real-world complexities of PFAS mixtures and cocontaminants present in environmental matrices.

More Information

For more information regarding the article, visit: Degradation and Removal Methods

For more information on degradation and removal methods for water contaminated with perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl, contact Rula Deeb at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Elisabeth Hawley at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..