America has a problem with water. Not only do 10% of homes nationwide have leaks that waste up to 90 gallons or more per day, but some residential water supplies are becoming so polluted that it is hard to find clean water at all. This begs the question — how safe is your tap water to drink?
Any homeowner assumes that when they go to their tap to drink, shower, or clean, they’ll get clean, unpolluted water to drink. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case, and what’s even scarier is that sometimes the water may look, smell, and taste clean, but it is really filled with invisible contaminants.
This is partially the case with the water utilities in Staunton, Waynesboro, and Augusta County, Virginia. While the water supplies there are all technically in compliance with federal standards, they still contain a few contaminants, according to the Environmental Working Group. The EWG is a non-profit with the goal of protecting human health and the environment, and they recently shared some troubling information about the water in these Virginia counties.
For their findings, the EWG used data from the Virginia Department of Health and the Environmental Protection Agency to analyze drinking water tests between 2010 and 2015 in counties all across the nation. They found that in the list of 500 contaminants, there were 267 found in Staunton, Waynesboro, and Augusta counties. Contaminants found include chlorate, which harms the thyroid, and chromium, which is a known carcinogen.
It’s important to note that just because the water is deemed safe by federal standards, there could still be enough contaminants in the water to pose a severe health threat. Some local officials are reluctant to come to terms with this fact. It’s easy to see why: no one wants to think that their home’s drinking water isn’t safe for consumption. Unfortunately, one only has to look to Flint, Michigan to see how dangerous it can be to make assumptions about the safety of our drinking water.
“Just because your tap water gets a passing grade from the government doesn’t always mean it’s safe,” said Ken Cook, the president of the Environmental Working Group to News Leader. “Americans deserve the fullest picture possible of what’s in their tap water.”
What Can You Do To Ensure Your Virginia Home Has Clean Water?
Cleaning up municipal water supplies and natural water sources is a complicated project with no easy answers or solutions. Not only can the water be contaminated, but toxins can also seep into the water from aging, rusty pipes. But while it’s not easy to fix your city’s water source, it is easy to ensure that your home or business has safe drinking water.