2005 CPEO Military List Archive

From: Lenny Siegel <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
Date: 9 Feb 2005 20:19:16 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] AWWA perchlorate occurrence study

Perchlorate Detected in Drinking Water in 26 States, AWWA Report Says;
Most Detections at Levels Below 12 Micrograms per Liter

DENVER, Feb. 9 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Perchlorate has been detected in
drinking water in 26 states and Puerto Rico, according to an occurrence
study released today by the American Water Works Association (AWWA). 

The study shows that most of the detections were at levels below 12
micrograms per liter (ug/l) (SEE NOTE 1). 

"The AWWA occurrence study helps define the scope of perchlorate
contamination and its possible effects on drinking water systems and
communities," said AWWA Deputy Executive Director Tom Curtis. "As more
sensitive analytical methods are developed, perchlorate detection is
likely to increase."

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is currently assessing
the need for a drinking water standard for perchlorate. Perchlorate is a
highly stable chemical compound commonly used for rocket fuel,
munitions, fireworks and air-bag inflators, and has been found to occur
naturally. The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) on Jan. 11 released a
perchlorate health effects report to inform EPA's actions. 

Other highlights from the occurrence study, which was released during a
Feb. 9 AWWA Webcast, include:

The majority of detections were not associated with EPA- identified
releases of perchlorate.

Perchlorate was detected in approximately 5 percent of the nation's
large community water systems.

Less than 1 percent of all drinking water systems would be affected if a
maximum contaminant level (MCL) of 20 ug/L were established for
perchlorate. That would rise to 4 percent if the MCL were set lower at 4 ug/L.

The highest density of perchlorate detection was found in Southern
California, west central Texas, along the East Coast between New Jersey
and Long Island, and in Massachusetts.

The occurrence of perchlorate in drinking water was analyzed and
geographically mapped by compiling data from existing databases,
including a national EPA study and studies by the states of Arizona,
California, Texas and Massachusetts. 

A copy of the report can be found on AWWA's website at
http://www.awwa.org/Advocacy/govtaff/govnew.cfm (SEE NOTE 2). 

On Point: Perchlorate contains other AWWA resources:


(NOTE 1): A microgram per liter equates to approximately one drop in
55,000 gallons. 

(NOTE 2): The report requires the Adobe Acrobat Reader. The latest
version can be downloaded for free at http://www.adobe.com.


AWWA is the authoritative resource for knowledge, information, and
advocacy to improve the quality and supply of drinking water in North
America and beyond. AWWA is the largest organization of water
professionals in the world. AWWA advances public health, safety and
welfare by uniting the efforts of the full spectrum of the drinking
water community. Through our collective strength we become better
stewards of water for the greatest good of the people and the environment.

For the original press release, see 


Lenny Siegel
Director, Center for Public Environmental Oversight
c/o PSC, 278-A Hope St., Mountain View, CA 94041
Voice: 650/961-8918 or 650/969-1545
Fax: 650/961-8918
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