Balka noted that chemical companies already are "putting away more money than they did for asbestos litigation."
"When I bought Home Rubber in 1996, the company still was receiving blanket, catch-all legal letters (written) to anyone who was within a 100-mile radius of anywhere asbestos was discovered," he said. "My guess is we all get caught up in this mouse trap as well."
Keslar said ARPM has assembled courses "with very smart people in the industry" to address the PFAS issue, and is running a series of educational programs that are free to members.
"We know this is going to trickle down and affect all of us," Keslar said. "And we need to have a voice when it does."
ARPM's first course covered 'PFAS explained,' and the group offered a second course announcing the most up-to-date stances of the EU, U.S., EPA and specific U.S. states in the PFAS regulatory conversation.
ARPM has included resources from larger chemical companies like Chemours, which already has a presence on Capitol Hill, Keslar said.
ARPM members realize no issue is an island unto itself. Most of the prescient topics today in the rubber world—non-tire and tire alike—affect each other in a symbiotic way.
For instance, ARPM has numerous resources for EV part production, such as what will be needed now and in the future.
"But right now, PFAS offers bigger fish to fry ... or keep safe, depending on your perspective," Keslar said.
Riley-Ryman said ARPM remains a beacon as industry waters become cloudy.
"There are a lot of people out there who are not members who could benefit from membership," she said.
Lonsway noted that the diversity of ARPM's membership should be cultivated.
"We all come from different backgrounds, different markets," he said. "But all of us take a lot of pride in this industry, and it is one that is damn rewarding. ARPM can help spread that message.
"And we are proud of that."