Environment & Health

DuPont Has Spread Its Pollutants Around the World. Now it Wants to Filter Your Contaminated Water.

Andrew Lichtenstein/Corbis via Getty Images
A coal barge travels up the Kanawha River in Charleston, West Virginia, passing the Dupont chemical plant.

DuPont opened a factory in Saudi Arabia last week that will produce reverse osmosis water filters. The filters use ultra-thin membranes to remove water impurities, including PFAS — chemicals made and used by DuPont that have caused widespread water contamination around the world.

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Reverse osmosis is one of the technologies that the Environmental Protection Agency recommends for reducing water contamination from PFAS chemicals, which are associated with cancers, immune dysfunction, reproductive issues, and other health problems. According to the agency’s website, reverse osmosis “membranes are typically more than 90 percent effective at removing a wide range of PFAS, including shorter chain PFAS.”

DuPont Water Solutions, a division of DowDuPont that focuses on water filtration, opened the plant with a ribbon-cutting ceremony in Jubail, Saudi Arabia, on December 3. “Milestone achievement improves direct access to potable and industrial water solutions,” announced a DuPont press release about the plant, which is expected to begin production early next year.

About the reporter

Sharon Lerner

Sharon Lerner

Sharon Lerner is a reporting fellow with Type Investigations covering environmental issues for The Intercept.

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