New Hampshire is suing eight companies including 3M and Dupont for damage it says has been caused statewide by a class of potentially toxic chemicals found in everything from pizza boxes to fast-food wrappers.
The state becomes the second in the nation to go after the makers of perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances or PFAS and the first to target statewide contamination.
New York state has sued six companies that made firefighting foam containing PFOS and/or PFOA for contaminating drinking water in two communities and groundwater in another.
The two lawsuits filed Wednesday by New Hampshire accuse some of the companies of knowing about potential dangers for decades.
Scientific studies have linked high levels of PFAS to a range of illnesses and problems such as kidney cancer and pregnancy difficulties.