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Is Your Water Supply loaded with Chromium-6?

Chromium-6, which can occur naturally, first achieved national attention in the 1990s . . .

. . . when then-legal clerk Erin Brockovich helped residents in Hinkley, California, settle a massive case against Pacific Gas and Electric Co. The electric utility had polluted the groundwater with carcinogenic chemicals, which Brockovich linked to illnesses in the town. The story was later told in the movie “Erin Brockovich,” starring Julia Roberts.

So.. what can you do about it?

Well, to make it simple, this will depend upon how you receive your water, the level of risk you’re willing to accept and how much you’re willing to spend. The EWG has a buying guide on its website.

Get Your Water Tested!

The BEST company we've found is the National Testing Labs. Click HERE to find out more.

If you own a well, there are three steps to follow.

1. Check the EWG report for your area. Just remember that the EWG report relies on reported results by public utilities and doesn’t necessarily reflect how healthy well water in the area is. That answer would need to come from having the well tested by an accredited drinking water laboratory.  In New Jersey, the worst area of contamination, there are eight such labs in Monmouth and Ocean counties:

  • ‍Agra Environmental, Marlboro
  • Lyons Environmental, Neptune
  • CRC Services, Eatontown
  • E. Runyon Aquatic Services, Howell
  • Precision Analytical Services, Toms River
  • Brick Township MUA, Brick
  • House Testers, Toms River
  • J.R. Henderson Labs, Beachwood

2. Choose a treatment system that is outfitted to treat whatever water quality issues need addressing. These systems are not “one size fits all” — something that filters out one contaminant might not address another. If you aren’t strapped for cash, it may help to investigate the other serious pollution problems in your region, such as perchlorates, pharmaceuticals, and lead. A system that will remove all of these will ultimately save you heaps.

3. Only buy equipment that has been certified as effective by an independent testing laboratory. If possible look for a product vendor happy to show you test results for the expected life of the filter, not just first day performance.

The EWG estimates that 12,000 Americans are at heightened risk for cancer from chromium-6 ingestion, or about 1 in 1,000,000 during a 70-year lifespan.

Local utilities reports:

Systems that posted an average higher than the California goal of 0.02 ppb are marked with an (*). California’s current enforceable standard - the toughest in the nation - is 10 parts per billion, which no utility in the New Jersey area reached:

Monmouth County

  • ‍NJ American Water Co. – Coastal North, chromium-6 detected in 31 out of 56 samples, average of 0.048 ppb*
  • Freehold Borough Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 0 out of 4 samples, average of 0.000 ppb
  • Freehold Township Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 13 out of 14 samples, average of 0.067 ppb*
  • Gordon’s Corner Water Company, chromium-6 detected in 6 out of 6 samples, average of 0.075 ppb*
  • Keansburg Water & Sewer Department, chromium-6 detected in 6 out of 8 samples, average of 0.039 ppb*
  • Manasquan Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 4 out of 4 samples, average of 0.13 ppb*
  • Marlboro MUA, chromium-6 detected in 10 out of 10 samples, average of 0.091 ppb*
  • NJ Water Supply Authority – Manasquan, chromium-6 detected in 6 out of 6 samples, average of 0.058 ppb*
  • Red Bank Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 6 out of 12 samples, average of 0.025 ppb*
  • Shorelands Water Co., Inc., chromium-6 detected in 12 out of 12 samples, average of 0.068 ppb*
  • Spring Lake Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 8 out of 12 samples, average of 0.045 ppb*
  • United Water – Matchaponix, chromium-6 detected in 8 out of 8 samples, average of 0.077 ppb*
  • Wall Township Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 14 out of 18 samples, average of 0.059 ppb*

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Ocean County

  • ‍NJ American Water Co. – Coastal North, chromium-6 detected in 31 out of 56 samples, average of 0.048 ppb*
  • United Water – Toms River, chromium-6 detected in 14 out of 16 samples, average of 0.072 ppb*
  • Stafford Township Water – Beach Haven West, chromium-6 detected in 6 out of 8 samples, average of 0.047 ppb*
  • Ship Bottom Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 2 out of 4 samples, average of 0.019 ppb
  • Seaside Park Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 1 out of 8 samples, average of 0.005 ppb
  • Seaside Heights Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 2 out of 4 samples, average of 0.08 ppb*
  • Point Pleasant Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 10 out of 19 samples, average of 0.029 ppb*
  • Point Pleasant Beach Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 7 out of 8 samples, average of 0.059 ppb*
  • Ocean Township MUA Pebble Beach, chromium-6 detected in 6 out of 6 samples, average of 0.083 ppb*
  • Manchester Township Water Utility, chromium-6 detected in 6 out of 8 samples, average of 0.099 ppb*
  • Manchester Township Div. of Utilities – Western, chromium-6 detected in 7 out of 10 samples, average of 0.071 ppb*
  • Long Beach Township Brant Beach, chromium-6 detected in 7 out of 8 samples, average of 0.066 ppb*
  • Little Egg Harbor Township MUA, chromium-6 detected in 6 out of 12 samples, average of 0.036 ppb*
  • Lavallette Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 0 out of 3 samples, average of 0.000 ppb
  • Lakewood Township MUA, chromium-6 detected in 15 out of 22 samples, average of 0.056 ppb*
  • Lacey Township MUA, chromium-6 detected in 4 out of 6 samples, average of 0.033 ppb*
  • Jackson Township MUA, chromium-6 detected in 7 out of 16 samples, average of 0.043 ppb*
  • Brick Township MUA, chromium-6 detected in 2 out of 8 samples, average of 0.009 ppb
  • Beachwood Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 4 out of 4 samples, average of 0.07 ppb*
  • Beach Haven Water Department, chromium-6 detected in 2 out of 4 samples, average of 0.028 ppb*
  • Barnegat Township Water & Sewer, chromium-6 detected in 8 out of 10 samples, average of 0.059 ppb*
Source:
John Biethan AlkaWay USA