Water News

‘What did we do?’ Families anxious about chemicals found in tap water – August 16, 2018 – CNN – It’s been about three weeks since Tammy Cooper last drank water from her tap. That’s when she saw a warning on Facebook for residents of her small Western Michigan town to stop drinking the water.

CDC taps Virginia Tech researchers to study antibiotic resistance in water – November 7, 2018 – Becker’s Hospital Review – The CDC awarded two contracts to faculty at Blacksburg, Va.-based Virginia Tech Nov. 5, to study the effects of antibiotic resistance in recycled water and plumbing.

Amy Pruden, PhD, and Marc Edwards, PhD, both professors in the Charles Edward Via Jr. Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering in the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech, will conduct their research over the next year.

Lead found at Boise’s Fairmont Jr. High; officials now checking 27 other schools – October 17, 2018 – KIVI – BOISE – Water tested at Fairmont Junior High School in Boise has registered positive for elevated levels of lead, according to the Boise School District.

Desalination process could yield fresh water from Permian’s produced water – October 15, 2018 – Midland Reporter- Telegram – Oil and gas producers, awash in water produced alongside crude oil, continue seeking ways to better manage the supply. The amount of water produced with the crude “is so high you can’t possibly use it all for future development,” said Sue Snyder, chief operating officer of Enviro Water Minerals.

US drinking water supply is at risk from deteriorating pipes – September 22, 2018 – Washington Examiner –  As prospects fade for bipartisan infrastructure legislation, a new report highlights the dire consequences to public health and safety that will result from continued deterioration of the nation’s underground water networks.

Beset by over 300,000 water main breaks each year, America’s underground water pipes are showing the effects of age and chronic corrosion. “The signs of distress surface daily as water mains break causing floods and service disruptions,” the study notes. “The loss of service is more than an inconvenience, causing significant economic and social disruptions.”

More Water, Mom? H2O Is Top Kids’ Beverage in U.S. – September 13, 2018 – HealthDay –  U.S. kids are drinking far more water than sodas and fruit drinks, health officials say.  A new report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finds that water accounts for almost half of kids’ total beverage consumption.

Lead Found in Thousands of NYC School Water Fixtures – September 12, 2018 – NYC Patch – More than 12,000 water fixtures in New York City schools were recently found to have elevated levels of lead — and more than 1,100 have not been completely fixed, the Department of Education said Tuesday.

Water coolers replace school drinking fountains in Detroit – September 4, 2018 – FOX News/AP – Thousands of Detroit public schools students were told Tuesday to drink from district-supplied water coolers or bottled water on the first day of classes, after the drinking fountains were shut off because of contaminants in some water fixtures.

As Climate Warms, Algae Blooms In Drinking Water Supplies – September 3, 2018 – NPR – The vague warning jolted citizens in and around Salem, Oregon to attention on May 29. “Civil Emergency in this area until 1128PM,” read the text message alert. “Prepare for action.” It was a ham-handed message — one that left some wondering if an attack was imminent. In fact, the danger officials wanted to warn them about wasn’t coming from the sky. It was coming from their taps.

New tests identify contaminated drinking water in minutes, not weeks –  August 30, 2018 Rex Merrifield, Horizon: The EU Research & Innovation Magazine – Speedy, affordable water tests that can be used in on location and even run continuously will help scientists identify disease-causing bacteria in under an hour and potentially reduce the spread of common illnesses such as diarrhoea, which kills an estimated 842,000 people every year.

Detroit to shut drinking water to all schools after lead found – August 29, 2018 – Reuters – Detroit authorities on Wednesday ordered drinking water shut off at all 110 city public schools pending further testing after elevated levels of lead and copper were found in water at more than a dozen buildings.

NC science panel: Health goal for GenX in drinking water is right – August 20, 2018 – The Fayetteville Observer/AP – RALEIGH — A state science panel said Monday that state health officials were right to set a health target for a little-studied industrial chemical found in drinking water at a level 500 times lower than the manufacturer proposed.

How chemicals can make their way into an area’s groundwater supply – August 21, 2018 – ClickOrlando.com – Florida had the 2nd highest amount residents affected by contamination in 2015. When the groundwater supply in two Brevard County cities tested positive for cancer-causing chemicals, residents demanded answers. Primarily about how the chemicals found their way into the water supply at all, and how their presence would affect living in the area.

CMS found lead in water at 27 schools. Dozens more are untested. Should you worry? – August 13, 2018 – Charlotte Observer – This is bound to set off alarms in homes across the county: When Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools ran lead tests on drinking fountains and sinks at 58 schools last fall, 27 had unacceptably high levels of the dangerous element that can be found in older plumbing.

White House called toxins contamination ‘PR nightmare’ – August 13, 2018 – AP News – HORSHAM, Pa. (AP) — Lauren Woeher wonders if her 16-month-old daughter has been harmed by tap water contaminated with toxic industrial compounds used in products like nonstick cookware, carpets, firefighting foam and fast-food wrappers. Henry Betz, at 76, rattles around his house alone at night, thinking about the water his family unknowingly drank for years that was tainted by the same contaminants, and the pancreatic cancers that killed wife Betty Jean and two others in his household.

Deadly toxins in water supply a ‘wake up call’ for US authorities – August 7, 2018 – Newsweek – The swimmers and kayakers of Oregon are no strangers to algae. In recent years, warnings of infestations in ponds and lakes have become routine. When an early-summer algal bloom developed on Detroit Lake near Salem this May, state and city officials knew exactly what tests to run and advisories to issue.

Drugged waters – how modern medicine is turning into an environmental curse – August 6, 2018 – United Nations Environment – As the world’s population expands and we become wealthier, drugs and chemical-based care products become more prevalent. While pharmaceuticals are essential for human health and well-being, less is known on the effects they have on the freshwater sources on which we depend for our existence, and their impact on human health and biota.

Lead contamination in schools’ drinking water worse than previously thought – August 6, 2018 – MultiBriefs – Lead contamination in U.S. schools is more pervasive than previously thought, new water testing results from 20 states say. The data was published in an interactive map by Environment America and U.S. PIRG in June.

Is there a new water crisis in Michigan? – July 31, 2018 – CNN – On Sunday, Michigan’s lieutenant governor called a state of emergency for Kalamazoo County due to water contaminated with chemicals at more 20 times the threshold set by the US Environmental Protection Agency. It’s yet another site on a growing list of those around the state contaminated with the chemicals PFAS or PFOA.

Off your mental game? You could be mildly dehydrated. – July 30, 2018 – NPR – “We find that when people are mildly dehydrated they really don’t do as well on tasks that require complex processing or on tasks that require a lot of their attention,” says Mindy Millard-Stafford, director of the Exercise Physiology Laboratory at Georgia Institute of Technology. She published an analysis of the evidence this month, based on 33 studies.

Watchdog says lack of EPA oversight helped cause ‘catastrophic’ Flint water crisis – July 22, 2018 – CNN – A report from the Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of the Inspector General strongly criticizes the local, state and federal government’s response to the Flint water crisis in 2015 and 2016.

Water shouldn’t make Americans sick – it will cost $105 billion to ensure it doesn’t.  – July 19, 2018 – The Hill – The American Society of Civil Engineers gives the nation’s drinking water infrastructure a D grade. There are 240,000 water main breaks across the country each year, and 6 billion gallons of treated water are lost each year to leaking pipes. An estimated $105 billion is needed to upgrade our country’s drinking water and wastewater systems. We also need to protect and restore our rivers. Nationally, rivers provide more than two-thirds of our drinking water supplies. Healthy rivers, wetlands and floodplains are natural infrastructure, vital to our safety and economy.

Study: Water softeners partly to blame for Minn.’s salty lakes, streams – July 15, 2018 – MPR News – Most efforts to reduce chloride levels in Minnesota lakes and rivers have focused on salt used to keep roads and highways clear of ice. But a new study from the University of Minnesota found that home water softeners are sending a significant amount of salt into the environment.

North metro Denver groundwater contaminated with PFCs is flowing into a drinking-water system that supplies 50,000 residents – July 13, 2018 – The Denver Post – Drinking-water well tests in north metro Denver have detected perfluorinated chemicals contamination at levels up to 32 times higher than a federal health advisory limit, forcing utility officials to dilute the tainted supply before it reaches people.

This is exactly how much water you need to drink in a day. – June 26, 2018 – MSN Lifestyle, Ashley Oerman, Cosmopolitan – Real talk on that whole eight glasses a day thing. Although you may prefer wine, water makes up roughly 60 percent of your body, where it seriously pulls its weight: It helps transport nutrients to your cells, moves waste out of your body, and plays an important role in respiration and energy metabolism, according to the National Academy of Sciences’s Institute of Medicine.

Does your school have lead in its drinking water? – Interactive map: San Diego County schools that had lead in their drinking water – July 5, 2018 – The San Diego Union-Tribune – Eleven schools in San Diego County had unsafe levels of lead in drinking water last year, according to new data from the California State Water Resources Control Board, and more test results are expected soon as schools adhere to new legislation.

OSU-Cascades prof gets $2 million grant for water research – July 2, 2018 – KTVZ – BEND, Ore. – A researcher at Oregon State University-Cascades will lead a team working on turning salt water into drinking water as part of a $21 million national effort.

Chemicals found in local water prompt new alerts to customers.   – June 19, 2018 – Dayton Daily News – Potentially dangerous chemical compounds detected for the first time in area drinking water prompted Dayton and Montgomery County to notify their customers. The discovery also prompted a warning from an independent expert.

Nebraska Environmental Trust awards grant to NU/Nebraska Water Center to research nitrate mitigation – June 18, 2018 – Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute, University of Nebraska – The Nebraska Environmental Trust recently awarded $85,000 to the University of Nebraska Board of Regents to fund a new research project, “Novel approaches for controlling nitrate leaching and protecting Nebraska groundwater,” conducted by the Nebraska Water Center, part of the Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute. This is the first year of award with a potential for second-year funding totaling $79,306.

Michigan Enacts Toughest Lead Rules in U.S. After Flint Crisis – June 15th, 2018 – Associated Press – Michigan on Thursday began enforcing the nation’s strictest rules for lead in drinking water, a plan that eventually will result in replacing all 500,000 lead service pipes statewide in the wake of the contamination of Flint’s supply.

EPA Sets June PFAS Event in New Hampshire – June 14, 2018 – WAMC Northeast Public Radio – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is inviting Vermonters to attend a regional summit on unregulated PFAS chemicals later this month in New Hampshire. Following a summit in Washington D.C. in May, the EPA has scheduled a two-day event in Exeter, New Hampshire to hear from people affected by PFAS chemicals.

Oregon Health Authority to Require Testing for Cyanotoxins in Drinking Water – June 5, 2018 – Statesman Journal – The Oregon Health Authority will soon require routine testing of water sources for toxins like those discovered in Salem’s drinking water.

Washington State to Test Drinking Water for PFAS Contamination Linked to Firefighting Foam – May 21, 2018 – The Seattle Times – The Washington Department of Health plans to test several hundred water systems in the state for trace contamination of more than a dozen chemicals found in some firefighting foams.

Boil Water Notice Issued in Fort Lauderdale following Water Main Break – CBS Miami – Folks in and around Downtown Fort Lauderdale are dealing with the effects of a water main break.

EPA Gives $1.9 Million to Researcher to Find Lead in Water – April 25, 2018 – CNN – The EPA has awarded the Virginia Tech researcher who first identified lead in water systems in Flint, Michigan, and Washington, DC, with a $1.9 million grant to study other American cities where lead-tainted water is suspected — but where residents are struggling to get help from their governments.

Florida Bill Allows Sewage Dumping in Drinking Water Aquifers – March 12, 2018 – Miami New Times – Miamians get nearly all of their drinking water from the Biscayne Aquifer, a clean source of natural H2O that stretches underground from the southern tip of the state north to Palm Beach County.

Why are Texas’ smaller utilities not cleaning up drinking water? – January 22, 2018 – The Texas Tribune – Dozens of small and rural utilities in the state have for years provided water that contains illegal levels of radiation, lead and arsenic. Lack of resources is largely to blame — but there’s more to it than that.

EPA News Release: EPA Seeks Input from State Partners on Lead and Copper Rule – December 14, 2017  – EPA – WASHINGTON  — Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sent letters to state partners on forthcoming proposed regulatory revisions to the existing Lead and Copper Rule (LCR). These changes are intended to not only improve the protection of public health, but the effective implementation of the rule as well.

West Michigan school gets bottled water amid tests for hazardous chemicals – October 17, 2017 – ROCKFORD, Mich. (AP) (10/12/2017) – Officials are shutting off drinking fountains and providing bottled water at a middle school in western Michigan as they test water for possible hazardous chemicals from a decades-old tannery waste dump site nearby.

Energy drinks ‘health risk’ claim prompts reaction from CBA – September 27, 2017 – FOODBEV Media – The Canadian Beverage Association (CBA) has defended the industry’s record on advertising sports drinks and energy drinks to children, after the Canadian Paediatric Society (CPS) labelled them “potential risks for the health of children”.

Test Results Show Cleveland Water Could Bring Health Problems to Residents – September 12, 2017 – KRMG – The water in Cleveland, Oklahoma, could pose a major health risk for those drinking it.

Experts Warn of Hurricane Harvey Drinking Water Health Risks – August 30, 2017 – W&WD – Rescue efforts continued as Tropical Storm Harvey battered southeast Texas and southwest Louisiana. Health officials are warning residents of the health dangers they could face as floodwaters rise and drinking water supplies are compromised in the wake of the hurricane-turned-tropical storm.

HALF of America’s black and Hispanic citizens are dehydrated because they don’t have access to chemical-free water, Harvard study reveals – August 11, 2017  -Mail Online- Black and Hispanic adults in the US have higher rates of dehydration than whites due to a lack of access to safe, clean tap water, researchers say.

Officials find evidence of E. coli at hydration station at U.S. Open – June 16, 2017 – ESPN.com News – Health officials said evidence of E. coli bacteria was found at a hydration station at the Erin Hills golf course, site of the U.S. Open in Erin, Wisconsin.

Fecal microbes found in 60 percent of sampled Kewaunee County wells – June 15, 2017 – HNG News, The Star – Tests show waste from Kewaunee County’s 97,000 head of cattle contaminates majority of wells.

What You Should Know About Drinking Water (but Probably Don’t) – June 1, 2017 – NBC News, Better – Everything you need to know about the most essential part of your daily diet.

Virginia public schools will be required to test drinking water for lead – May 22, 2017 – Waterworld – A new law will require public schools in Virginia to test their drinking water sources for lead beginning next month.

Access to drinking water around the world – in five infographics  – March 17, 2017 – The Guardian – Billions of people have gained access to clean and safe drinking water since 1990, but data show that huge inequalities remain

Unsafe Levels of Lead Found in Nearly 10 Percent of Drinking Water Faucets Tested in City Schools – February 6, 2017 – Spectrum News NY 1 – Unsafe levels of lead have been found in the drinking water from nearly 10 percent of the faucets tested in city schools. Nearly every school tested had at least one faucet with tainted water, the result of old pipes and plumbing fixtures. NY1’s Lindsey Christ filed the following report.

America’s Lead Crisis Continues: Steps to protect your family – January 24, 2017 – KTBS News – Flint, Mich.; Chicago Ill.; St. Joseph, La. Growing concerns about the quality of our drinking water has a lot of people on edge.

Investigations reveal startling scope of lead in drinking water – December 20, 2016 – PBS Newshour  – Flint is not alone in having a lead contamination problem. Two recent news investigation find two startling numbers. A Reuters investigation of lead levels in blood found nearly 3,000 areas in the country with contamination levels higher than those in Flint.

Where have high levels of lead been found in drinking water? This map will show you – November 21, 2016 – PIX11 NEWS – Almost 200 water systems in New York and New Jersey have exceeded the federal action level for lead in drinking water during the past 3 to 4 years, according to data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Flint water crisis prompts lead testing in Massachusetts schools – November 7, 2016 – South Coast Today
– More than 99 Massachusetts school buildings across at least 22 communities have tested positive for elevated lead levels since June, when the state launched a new grant program to help schools test their water.

For Weight Loss, Water Beats Diet Soda – October 20, 2016 – The New York Times
– Researchers put 81 overweight women with Type 2 diabetes on the same weight-control diet, except that half drank diet beverages five times a week after their main meal at lunch, while the other half substituted plain water. The study is in Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism.

Tests show drinking water contamination above EPA advisory level in Gadsden area– September 20, 2016 – WHNT News
– The Alabama Department of Public Health announced that more systems have tested above the EPA threshold for safe drinking water, when it comes to PFC contamination. A news release from the department says two tests from the Gadsden Water Works and Sewer Board tested above EPA advisory levels.

Lead Tests on New York City Schools’ Water May Have Masked Scope of Risk – August 31, 2016 – New York Times
– According to the city, every water outlet in each school was turned on fully for two hours the night before the samples were taken — a practice known as pre-stagnation flushing that cleans most soluble lead and lead particles from pipes and thus reduces lead levels temporarily.

New Study Shows High Potential for Groundwater to be Corrosive in Half of U.S. States – July 13, 2016 – USGS NEWS – A new U.S. Geological Survey assessment of more than 20,000 wells nationwide shows that untreated groundwater in 25 states has a high prevalence of being potentially corrosive. The states with the largest percentage of wells with potentially corrosive groundwater are located primarily in the Northeast, the Southeast, and the Northwest.

CDC: Flint water crisis “entirely preventable” – June 25, 2016 – CBS News – Analysis of blood samples from young children from Flint, Mich., shows they had much more lead in their blood after the city began using local drinking water in an effort to cut costs, a new U.S. government study reveals.

At least 33 US cities used water testing ‘cheats’ over lead concerns – June 2, 2016 – The Guardian – Guardian investigation reveals testing regimes similar to that of Flint were in place in major cities including Chicago, Boston and Philadelphia

Lead in Portland Public Schools’ drinking water – May 31, 2016 – NBC News – Recent tests that showed high levels of lead in water at two Portland schools raised questions about when Portland Public Schools learned about the contamination and why school leaders waited so long to tell parents about the issue.

Elizabeth schools failed to report lead in drinking water to parents for three years – April 4, 2016 – New York’s PIX11 – Elizabeth Public Schools never told parents about drinking water tests in 2013 that turned up positive for lead in 12 school buildings.

Students Reveal How They Broke the Lead Contamination Case in Flint, Mich. – March 1, 2015 – Scientific American – Officials criticized them as bogus “magicians,” but making data transparent caused residents to demand action

Emails Reveal Early Suspicions of a Flint Link to Legionnaires’ Disease – February 4, 2016 – The New York Times – Michigan state officials were aware of an increase in Legionnaires’ disease cases and a possible tie to Flint’s troubled water supply at least 10 months before Gov. Rick Snyder informed the public of the situation last month, newly obtained emails show.

Millions of Americans may be drinking poisoned water – January 26, 2016 – msn.com  – Water tests are being manipulated in “every major U.S. city east of the Mississippi,” an anonymous source intimately familiar with lead and copper regulations told The Guardian.

Flint’s drinking water crisis: 5 things to know – January 19, 2016 – USA Today – The state of Michigan downplayed and largely ignored the immediate complaints about the smell, color and taste of the water in 2014. Here’s what you need to know about how the public health crisis has evolved…