February 28, 2023 Ben Allen

What are Forever Chemicals?

About INSP Group PFAS Destruction

What Are Forever Chemicals? 

“Forever chemicals” is a colloquial term referring to a group of manmade chemicals known as PFAS, or per- and polyfluorinated alkyl substances. The carbon-fluorine bond of these synthetic molecules is so strong that they do not break down easily in the environment. People, animals, and fish all over the globe have been exposed to these substances. Furthermore, since most organisms cannot break down or excrete PFAS molecules, they bioaccumulate over time, meaning that they gradually accumulate in the body. Consequently, studies are showing that they pose a risk to our health.  

Forever Chemicals Chain

Where do ‘Forever Chemicals’ come from?

Forever chemicals began to be manufactured in the mid-1900’s. Due to their non-stick, and oil and water-resistant properties, PFAS have been used in a wide variety of consumer, commercial, and industrial products. Some common products that may expose you to PFAS are:  

  • Firefighting foam (AFFF) 
  • Nonstick cookware 
  • Food packaging
  • Stain-resistant carpets, furniture, and mattresses
  • Water-resistant outdoor gear
  • Cleaning products, paints and sealers
  • Cosmetics, especially ones labeled as waterproof or long-lasting
  • Home fertilizers

Forever Chemicals and our Water Supplies

A main contributor to PFAS entering the water supply has been firefighting foam (AFFF). Military bases, airports, and firefighting companies regularly perform training exercises for fire prevention. Although the sale of AFFF has been restricted in some areas, for many years forever chemicals have been entering the groundwater near these training sites.  

Another way forever chemicals enter the water supply is by industrial waste.  Conventional wastewater treatment plants cannot break down PFAS, so they pass through treatment and enter our groundwater, streams, and lakes. Furthermore, home fertilizers commonly sold in the United States contain sludge from wastewater treatment plants. As a result, PFAS in the fertilizer contaminates the soil, the water, and enters the plants that we eat.

What Solutions Does INSP Group Provide?

Phase 1: INSP Restoration Technology

Forever chemicals are able to be neutralised and disposed of safely with SCWO technology. This closed-loop system eliminates PFAS from contaminated water by using supercritical water oxidation (SCWO). It safely destroys PFAS in contaminated wastewater, landfill leachate, and AFFF, leaving only inert salts and clean water as byproducts. 

Phase 2: INSP Replacement Technology

GreenFire’s Non-toxic Fire Suppression products and Wetting Agents are highly effective replacements for traditional products used in the firefighting industry. They are PFAS-free, non-carcinogenic, and environmentally friendly. 

INSP Group

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