Glass Half-Empty

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The New York Times reported today that tap water is severely undertested for dangerous contaminants. In some water supplies, the EPA found that the level of arsenic is roughly equivalent to the risk of receiving 1,664 X-rays… How does this happen? The Safe Drinking Water Act only regulates 91 contaminants, yet there are more than 60,000 chemicals in use. Because many contaminants are not regulated under the act, the toxic water technically breaks no law. And because it takes a while for the contaminants to build up in your system, tap water would very rarely be pinpointed as the reason for illness. Any hope? In May, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee passed the Water Infrastructure Financing Act, which, if approved, would loan $14.7 billion to states most affected by this issue.

Dec. 17 2009 |
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