PFAS – forever chemicals, forever pollution? – Candriam

Investors should expect a rise in market risk and aim for opportunities.

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Once upon a time, mankind invented per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). These manufactured chemicals, developed in the 1940s, have such powerful qualities (water and oil repellent, resistant in high temperature or pressure environments) that they are now used everywhere for both domestic and industrial applications, from food packaging to aviation.
But they are toxic for living beings and for the environment – and are potentially present in the blood of 95-100% of the US population. Both genius and evil.

The materiality of PFAS risks on companies business is a topic of concern that companies themselves and investors should not underestimate. PFAS-related lawsuits have increased steadily in the US over the past years. In addition to this, environmental liabilities and reputational harm can reduce shareholder value significantly, not only for PFAS manufacturers, but also intermediaries using PFAS in their value chain.

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