Show Notes: Talking PFAS with Peter Murphy, MD EPOC Enviro (OPEC Systems) regarding PFAS remediation using their SAFF Foam Fractionation Technology – Published Wed 26/4/2023
Welcome back to Talking PFAS podcast. I am a journalist and your host Kayleen Bell. If you are joining us for the first time a very big welcome. I encourage you to listen to past episodes, with a range of really excellent guests from around the world.
Just before I introduce today’s guest, I encourage you to have a listen to Episode 42, which published yesterday. It is an update of the US EPA's proposed regulations regarding PFAS in drinking water. If the proposed MCLs are approved they will become mandatory levels. As discussed in last week’s episode the guidelines and regulatory limits for certain PFAS keep going down. The number of PFAS lawsuits keep increasing, and the number of PFAS contaminated sites keeps growing. This means there will be no shortage of PFAS remediation work for quite some time.
In fact, in a PFAS remediation special edition of the Environmental Business Journal published in 2019 they state, and I quote:
“The Environmental Business Journal has wrestled with the extent and scale of the PFAS Era in market terms. The EBJ has published a working model which reflects a consensus on the scale of the emerging PFAS market. The EBJ model includes major contributions from both waste and wastewater system upgrades and lifestyle costs as well as remediation. The model published in 2019 points to the possibility of expenditures in excess of $160 billion over the next 20-30 years and over 40,000 sites or facilities where significant PFAS contamination will likely be identified and treated or remediated at some level.”
Today’s discussion is another chat about a PFAS remediation method. Today’s guest is Peter Murphy Managing Director of an Australian based company, OPEC Systems. OPEC Systems trades as EPOC Enviro around the rest of the world which stands for Emerging Pollutants of Concern.
Today we will be discussing at length EPOC’s PFAS remediation technology for removing PFAS from water and landfill leachate using their SAFF systems. We also discuss the challenges that short chain PFAS compounds continue to present to remediators and how the SAFF has navigated these challenges so far.
SAFF system trials have already been conducted in Oakey QLD at a Department of Defence site, and at a landfill site in Telgay Sweden. These two systems have now moved out of their trial period into a fixed contract period. SAFF has also been trialed in UK, as well as an undisclosed location in the US on the East Coast of New York and will be involved in projects in Spain, Germany, Massachusett’s and Minnesota.
And just recently announced on the 13/4/2023 EPOC Enviro announced plans to open a major manufacturing facility in Statesville, North Carolina, with the first US built SAFF units scheduled to start PFAS remediation work in July 2023.
Pete Murphy from EPOC states in their recent media release: “Our award-winning SAFF technology has already visited eight different US states, and we are looking forward to leveraging this impact to all corners of the globe including back home in Australia to help communities remediate their PFAS impacted waters.”
However, despite the huge investments in remediation technology that are happening around the world, very little if any money has been invested to come up with solutions to clean up private land or farms that have been contaminated by PFAS. That is certainly the case in Australia and indeed also in many other parts of the world. I discussed this scenario very briefly with Pete today at the end of the episode.
Please note: I am an independent journalist and a podcaster no money was received for today’s interview. If in the future money is received from remediation com