#drinking water
As Many as 100 Million Americans Likely Have PFAS in their Drinking Water

As Many as 100 Million Americans Likely Have PFAS in their Drinking Water

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) updated its database and interactive map on where toxic fluorinated chemicals or “PFAS” have been detected based on the latest state and federal data and the numbers are alarming.  Nationwide, PFAS contamination is now found at 1,361 locations in 49 states — and in a variety of sources including community water systems, groundwater sources, military bases, airports, and industrial sites. According to EWG’s analysis of unreleased EPA data, “more than 100 million Americans may have PFAS in their drinking water.”

Why This Matters:  Think twice before you drink water from a tap in much of the country.  Almost one-third of Americans may be drinking water with PFAS in it.  The EPA does not regulate this “forever” chemical that never breaks down once released into the environment, and that builds up in our blood and organs.

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Oceans of Water for Drinking?

Oceans of Water for Drinking?

With less than 1% of the water on Earth safe and available for human consumption, we are rapidly approaching a global water crisis — today, one out of every three people does not have access to safe drinking water and by 2050, given climate change, that number is expected to be one out of two people.  Desalinisation of ocean water is increasingly being looked at as an option for countries in the Middle East like Saudi Arabia and Israel, but only because they are able to afford the expensive and energy-intensive process.

Why This Matters:  At current prices, even wealthy countries like Saudi Arabia cannot afford to keep increasing the amount of water it puts through the desalinization process — given the increasing demand for drinking water, cheaper alternatives to the current process are desperately needed.

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EPA Proposes New Rules for Getting Lead Out of Drinking Water – More Slowly

EPA Proposes New Rules for Getting Lead Out of Drinking Water – More Slowly

The Trump administration — after years of promising and more than 9 years of work by EPA — finally issued a proposed rule on lead in drinking water that does not require the removal of the estimated 6 million or more lead service lines that remain underground throughout the nation, and in fact, it doubles the amount of time allotted to replace lead pipes in water systems that contain high levels of lead.

Why This Matters:  They may try to put lipstick on this pig (sorry for the old pun), and it could have been worse, but when the Trump Administration brags that they put this rule in place, the question should be why did they not do more? This proposed rule is hardly sufficient to deal with the scope and the harm caused by lead in drinking water in this nation. 

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7.5 Million Californians Affected by Toxic Chemicals in Drinking Water

7.5 Million Californians Affected by Toxic Chemicals in Drinking Water

A recent study by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) found that 74 community water systems in California, which serve 7.5 million people, were contaminated with toxic fluorinated chemicals known as PFAS between 2013 and 2019. Why This Matters: The chemical companies that have made these chemicals for use in their products (like DuPont and 3M) largely pass along the cleanup costs of water sources onto municipalities and taxpayers.

 

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PFAS Found in Drinking Water at 90 More Army Installations

Yesterday, the Department of Defense Task Force looking into the problem, found that the drinking water at an additional 90 current and former Army and Army National Guard installations nationwide is contaminated with the toxic fluorinated chemicals called PFAS, according to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), which obtained the information via a Freedom of Information […]

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Newark Fast Tracks Lead Pipe Replacement

Newark Fast Tracks Lead Pipe Replacement

We wrote the other week about Newark’s ongoing water crisis and the city’s plan to distribute bottled water to residents after water filters that were previously made available to the public lacked the ability to filter out lead. Now New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy and Newark Mayor Ras Baraka announced a new $120 million plan yesterday to fast-track […]

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Newark Offers Bottled Water to Address Water Crisis, Residents Grow Weary

Newark Offers Bottled Water to Address Water Crisis, Residents Grow Weary

After it was determined that the 40,000 filters Newark city officials gave out to residents to address the ongoing water crisis weren’t actually filtering out lead, the city decided to begin distributing bottled water. In a startling echo of Flint, residents of Newark have been kept in the dark about the safety of their drinking […]

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One Million CA Residents Exposed to Dirty Drinking Water

One Million CA Residents Exposed to Dirty Drinking Water

The NY Times published a blistering exposé yesterday, in which it reported that “more than 300 public water systems in California serve unsafe drinking water, according to public compliance data compiled by the California State Water Resources Control Board” with “more than one million Californians exposed to unsafe water each year, according to public health officials.”   

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New data shows 610 sites in 43 states contaminated with toxic PFAS chemicals

New data shows 610 sites in 43 states contaminated with toxic PFAS chemicals

Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a family of chemicals that are linked to cancer and other illnesses and we’ve written numerous times about the extent of their contamination of drinking water in the U.S. (even at military bases) and the EPA’s slow response to regulate these toxins. Now a new analysis put out by […]

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Dirty Drinking Water Besets Coal County in Kentucky

Dirty Drinking Water Besets Coal County in Kentucky

The Governor of Kentucky, Republican Matt Bevin, is considering whether to declare a state of emergency that would unlock resources to repair the dilapidated water system in Martin County, Kentucky deep in the heart of coal country.  In the meantime, the residents there must buy bottled water or hope for donated water in order to keep from drinking the tap water while they wait for action.

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Midwest Still Flooded With Complications

Midwest Still Flooded With Complications

Last weekend, Missouri River flood waters in Kansas City overwhelmed city water treatment plants and the City was required by law to notify citizens that their drinking water had failed to meet a state safety standard. 

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EPA Slow to Act on PFAS Contamination Crisis

EPA Slow to Act on PFAS Contamination Crisis

A hearing on Capitol Hill today probed EPA’s failure to set safety standards for a class of toxic chemicals called perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) — also called the “forever chemicals” because they take thousands of years to break down.  Both Democrats and Republicans are concerned because PFAS has seeped into many public water systems in the United States and globally, especially near and on military bases and industrial sites, exposing millions to these chemicals at dangerous levels and causing health problems in those communities. 

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