Alaska Community Action on Toxics (ACAT) in partnership with other leaders in Alaska, is working to ensure that all Alaskans have access to clean air, water, and healthy food. ACAT works at local, state, national, and international levels to advocate for protective policies and hold military and industrial polluters accountable. Alaska faces unique environmental health challenges due to its vast geographic size and location. The region is a hemispheric sink for persistent chemicals that are carried northward on wind and ocean currents from lower latitudes. These toxic chemicals accumulate in the bodies of fish, wildlife, and people and have a disproportionate impact on Indigenous and rural communities in Alaska. These communities rely on traditional fishing and hunting for physical, spiritual, and cultural sustenance, ways of life that are disproportionately harmed by environmental pollution and climate change.
Advocates in Alaska took part in a national campaign urging REI to ban PFAS “forever chemicals”. In February 2023, following the nationwide campaign and state regulatory actions, REI announced it would ban PFAS in all textiles.
In March 2023, Alaska Community Action on Toxics (ACAT) and leaders from rural Alaska flew to Juneau to talk with legislators about addressing toxic PFAS chemicals.