EPA Has Found More Than a Dozen Unregulated Contaminants in Drinking Water

"The inaction on regulating contaminants — including those that likely cause cancer, reproductive or developmental issues — found in the water of millions of Americans illustrates shortcomings in the U.S. response to environmental threats, say experts."

"As far as state and federal officials are concerned, the drinking water in Smithwick, Texas, is perfectly safe.

Over the past two decades, the utility that provides water to much of the community has had little trouble complying with the Safe Drinking Water Act, which is intended to assure Americans that their tap water is clean. Yet, at least once a year since 2019, the Smithwick Mills water system, which serves about 200 residents in the area, has reported high levels of the synthetic chemical 1,2,3-trichloropropane, according to data provided by the Environmental Working Group, an advocacy organization that collects water testing results from states.

The chemical, a cleaning and degreasing solvent that is also a byproduct from manufacturing pesticides, is commonly referred to as TCP. It has been labeled as a likely carcinogen by the Environmental Protection Agency for more than a decade. There have been few active sources of TCP since the 1990s, but its legacy lives on because it breaks down slowly in the environment."

Agnel Philip reports for ProPublica November 6, 2023.

Source: ProPublica, 11/08/2023