How Polluted is U.S. Tap Water


America enjoys some of the cleanest and safest drinking water you can find on Earth due to the authorities’ intense efforts of providing the people with safe drinking water. However, we can not take clean drinking water for granted as there are many pollutants that can still be found in the U.S. tap water. To help you get a better understanding of the quality of the water you drink, we will show you just how polluted is the tap water you drink.

  • Until the 1970’s, the U. S. government had to contribution to ensuring the tap water is clean and safe for drinking and this issue was left to the hands of several local laws that were often weak and most of the times were ignored. In 1974, the Congress passed the Safe Drinking Water Act that offers the newly-formed EPA the power to set the national limits regarding certain contaminants in the tap water. It was then when the authorities started to become more aware of the dangers lurking in the tap water and started looking for ways to limit the harmful effects of contaminated tap water on people’s health.
  • The Safe Drinking Water Act includes 91 contaminants that must not be found in tap water, but the truth is that tens of thousands of chemicals are used in the U.S. Some of these contaminants have harmful effects related to cancer, hormonal issues, allergies, and severe organ damage. However, no new water pollutants have been added to the lists and more and more advanced technologies have been used in treating tap water.
  • Despite the fact that America enjoys the results of over 40 years of work in searching for ways to remove contaminants from the water, it is not 100% safe and clean. In 2009, the EPA released a warning letting people know that the number of water contaminants is increasing. In 2010, the Environmental Working Group proved that EPA was right as they reported traces of chromium-6 in at least 35 cities in the U.S. This substance is a listed carcinogen that can be extremely dangerous to people, which made the EPA consider regulating it nationally. The main concern remains the lead in the water pipes that can get into the water and affect your health. Chlorine is also a threat present in tap water as it is still used to kill bacteria in the water and it can seriously irritate your stomach and eyes and can even cause neurological problems.