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Highly fluorinated substances, PFAS, is a collective name for over 1,000 different substances that have in common that they are very difficult to break down. These synthetic substances are now everywhere in nature and we do not know how harmful they are to humans, animals, and plants.
Now, one of the largest manufacturers, 3M, has decided to stop manufacturing PFAS. At the end of 2025, the last PFAS deliveries are to depart 3M's factories, reports Bloomberg Law.
An important reason for 3M's decision is that alarms from researchers and environmental organizations have caused many countries to tighten the rules around the use of PFAS in everything from frying pans to clothing and beauty products.
Bloomberg estimates that 3M could risk paying $30 billion in damages for its production of PFAS. 3M sells PFAS for $1.3 billion a year, making it better business-wise to stop manufacturing than risk more damages as more and more countries tighten regulations.