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Your Tap Water Is Likely Contaminated with Industrial Chemicals

by Julie Fidler, Natural Society:

A new study by researchers at Harvard University shows that the water supplies of nearly 6 million Americans are tainted with unsafe levels of polyfluoroalkyl and perfluoroalkyl substances, or PFASs – a class of industrial chemicals linked to potentially serious health problems. [1]

PFASs have been used for decades in a wide variety of industrial and commercial products, including non-stick coatings on pans, food wrappers, water-repellent clothing, and firefighting foam.

Long-term exposure to PFASs has been linked to a higher risk of kidney cancer, thyroid problems, high cholesterol, and hormone disruption, among other health issues.

Xindi Hu, the study’s lead author, said:

“Virtually all Americans are exposed to these compounds. They never break down. Once they are released into the environment, they are there.”

What the Team Found in the Water

For the study, in Environmental Science and Technology Letters, researchers looked at concentrations of 6 types of PFAS chemicals in 36,000 samples of drinking water from around the U.S. that were collected by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) between 2013 and 2015.

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