Water Possibly Cancerous, Officials Do Nothing

“Cancer-Causing Metal Found In Chicago Area Tap Water”– it’s astonishing how much scare the Chicago Tribune can fit into a 9-word title.

The report that followed was in regards to the dangerous presence of chromium-6 in Lake Michigan.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, or the EPA, and the National Toxicology Program, chromium-6 is a metal that can cause cancer in humans if it is ingested in sufficient amounts.

For reasons unknown however, the EPA doesn’t require cities to test if ┬átheir drinking water is deadly or not.

Wow. Testing drinking water for chromium-6 may involve a city’s precious time and money, but it also involves cancer. Lives are at stake! But alas, out of sight, out of mind. Right, EPA?

So not only has it been shown that chromium-6 is toxic, but it’s also freely flowing out of the faucets of 7 million Chicago homes, and probably has been for who knows how long.

The city’s current choice solution? Claim that there couldn’t possibly be enough chromium-6 in our drinking water for it to seriously be considered fatal, or simply turn a blind eye.

Despite all reports claiming otherwise, there are still water officials out there who maintain that our drinking water is still safe. In addition, the Chicago Department of Water Management has yet to make a single official statement regarding chromium-6 at all. Apparently this has been the protocol regarding Chicago’s drinking water for years in spite of any health cautions.

But the plot thickens.

As if to prove them all wrong on cue, an independent lab hired by the Environmental Working Group found 0.18 parts of chromium-6 per billion in Lake Michigan, which happens to be THREE times higher than the safety limit proposed by water officials in California a year ago.

Wait a minute. There was a proposed safety limit for chromium-6? In another state? A whole YEAR ago?

What were the Lake Michigan water officials thinking while all these precautions were being measured? What about safety limits for chromium-6 in Illinois?

Currently, the EPA has made no legal regulation or limit on the amount of chromium-6 that can safely be present in drinking water.

This needs to change. You know it. I know it. Clearly California knows it.

What needs to be done is have the EPA create national standards for all state water officials to enforce and put safety limits on all toxic metals and substances, especially chromium-6.

The sooner we push for and establish these kinds of environmental policies, the better.

Since the big guys at EPA haven’t been doing anything about it, I can only assume they’ve just been waiting around for us to make the first move. Game on.

To help keep your drinking water as clean and cancer-free as possible, contact your local Department of Water Management and look into the proposed safety limits made by your drinking system’s water officials.