Aqueous Film-Forming Foams Containing Perfluorooctane Sulfonate Prohibited After May 28, 2013

Communiqué du commissaire des incendies

Aqueous Film-Forming Foams Containing Perfluorooctane Sulfonate Prohibited After May 28, 2013

Communiqué 2013-07

May 23, 2013

The Office of the Fire Marshal (OFM) received information from the federal government about aqueous film-forming foams (AFFF) used for fighting hydrocarbon fuel fires. Some of these foams contain perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS). PFOS is persistent, toxic and, in certain instances, bioaccumulative.

In 2008, the federal government developed Regulation SOR/2008-178, made under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999, because of concerns relating to PFOS in the environment. The Regulation prohibits the use, manufacture or sale of AFFF that contain PFOS. The Regulation includes a 5-year exemption of AFFF containing PFOS that were manufactured or imported before May 29, 2008, only for purposes other than testing or training. After May 28, 2013, all uses of AFFF containing PFOS above 0.5 parts per million (ppm) will be prohibited.

Before 2002, the company 3M was the main North American manufacturer of PFOS and AFFF that contained PFOS. The 3M foams produced under the Light Water brand name, listed below, may contain PFOS:

FC-203    FC-203FC    FC-203XF    FC-206
FC-600    FC-602    FC-603    FC-206FC.

In regard to other AFFF, check the material safety data sheet (MSDS) of the product in question to see if PFOS is listed as an ingredient. If unsure whether the foam contains PFOS, contact the manufacturer of the foam for details.

After May 28, 2013, AFFF sold in Canada must comply with Regulation SOR/2008-178 and may not contain more than 0.5 ppm of PFOS. In addition, after that date, AFFF containing PFOS will be considered “subject waste” as defined by Ontario Regulation 347 made under the Environmental Protection Act.

More information about AFFF that contain PFOS and their safe disposal can be found on the following Web sites:

Ministry of the Environment of Ontario Web site:

Environment Canada Web site:

To obtain additional technical and regulatory information, contact a district office of the Ontario Ministry of the Environment. To locate the closest office, visit their Web site.