U.S. drinking water supply mostly safe, but that’s not good enough

The US drinking water supply is mostly safe, but that’s not good enough

Most Americans take clean drinking water for granted as a convenience of modern life. The United States has one of the world’s safest drinking water supplies, but new challenges constantly emerge.

For example, on May 6 researchers at the nonprofit Environmental Working Group and Northeastern University reported that 43 states have sites where water is contaminated with toxic fluorinated compounds known as PFAS. And many farm workers in California’s Central … [more…]

California: 15,000 cancer cases could stem from chemicals in tap water

Study estimates 15,000 cancer cases could stem from chemicals in California tap water

(CNN) A new study finds that drinking tap water in California over the course of a lifetime could increase the risk of cancer.

Researchers from the environmental advocacy group Environmental Working Group estimated that the contaminants found in public water systems in California could contribute to about 15,500 cancer cases there over the course of a lifetime. These contaminants include chemicals such as arsenic, hexavalent chromium and radioactive elements such … [more…]

Sinking land, poisoned water: the dark side of California’s mega farms

photo: water aqueduct in California's Central Valley. Sinking land, poisoned water: the dark side of California's mega farms

Farm fields along the path of the California aqueduct in the Central Valley, a region that produces a quarter of the nation’s food. Photograph: Lucy Nicholson/Reuters

The floor of the Central Valley is slumping, and there is arsenic in the tap water. Now it seems the two problems are connected

Isabel Solorio can see the water treatment plant from her garden across the street. Built to filter out the arsenic … [more…]

Opinion: Infrastructure Bill Shouldn’t Ignore Our Aging Water Systems

photo: Infrastructure Bill Shouldn’t Ignore Our Aging Water Systems

Safe drinking water is the bedrock of public health. On that score, America is failing. From lead poisoning in Flint, Michigan, to toxic levels of arsenic found in Texas, over the past decade tens of millions of Americans have likely been exposed to dangerously unsafe water.

In his State of the Union address last month, President Donald Trump said it was “time to rebuild our crumbling infrastructure.” He is undeniably … [more…]

Why are Texas’ smaller utilities not cleaning up drinking water?

photo: Texas highway sign: Public Water Supply Approved

Several recent national studies have found dozens of public utilities in Texas that supply tens of thousands of people with drinking water that contains illegal levels of radiation, lead and arsenic. So how concerned should Texans be when they turn on the tap?

For those who live in urban areas, not very. But the studies have found that rural Texans are particularly at risk.

The latest, published earlier this month … [more…]