Areas of Focus

Areas of Focus

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California Drinking Water

The array of toxic pollutants in California drinking water could in combination cause more than 15,000 excess cases of cancer, according to a peer-reviewed study by scientists at Environmental Working Group – the first such study to assess the cumulative risk from carcinogenic drinking water contaminants.

Hidden Carcinogen Taints Tap Water, Consumer Products Nationwide

An industrial solvent classified as a likely carcinogen, which is also a common impurity in cosmetics and household cleaners, was detected in samples of drinking water supplies for nearly 90 million Americans in 45 states, according to testing data from local utilities analyzed by EWG.

The High Cost of Algae Blooms in U.S. Waters

Communities across the United States have spent more than $1 billion since 2010 dealing with outbreaks of potentially toxic algae in lakes, rivers, bays and drinking water supplies, according to an analysis by the Environmental Working Group.

In Minnesota’s Farm Country, Nitrate Pollution of Drinking Water is Getting Worse

Nitrate contamination of drinking water is getting worse in much of rural Minnesota, an Environmental Working Group analysis of state data found.

Case Study: Iowa Cities Struggle to Keep Farm Pollution Out of Tap Water

The Raccoon River in central Iowa runs through one of the most intensely farmed regions of the nation. Agriculture is vital to the area's economy, but polluted runoff from farms poses an acute threat to residents' tap water – and a daunting challenge to utilities struggling to keep the water clean.

Record-Breaking Number of Algae Outbreaks in 2019

A record-breaking number of potentially toxic algae blooms have plagued bodies of water across the country this summer. According to our map, which tracks news stories of algae blooms, as of August 27...

Algae Outbreaks Up by Nearly One-Fifth in 2019

EWG has found 508 news reports about algae blooms in the country's lakes, ponds and rivers so far this year – 18 percent more than the 429 we found in the same period last year.

Water Treatment Contaminants:

Across the nation, chlorine, added as a disinfectant to kill disease- causing microganisms in dirty source water, is reacting with rotting organic matter like sewage, manure from livestock, dead animals and fallen leaves to form toxic chemicals that are potentially harmful to people.

PFAS in Drinking Water: Hazardous at Ever-Lower Levels

Last week, as he unveiled the Environmental Protection Agency's toothless “action plan” on fluorinated chemicals, acting EPA chief Andrew Wheeler maintained that the current guideline of 70 parts per...


Toxic ‘Forever Chemicals’ Detected in Drinking Water Supplies Across California

Drinking water sources for 74 community water systems serving 7.5 million Californians are contaminated with the highly toxic fluorinated chemicals called PFAS, according to an Environmental Working Group review of the latest state data.

Study: Nitrate in Wisconsin’s Drinking Water Linked to Cancer, Preterm Births and Up To $74 Million in Yearly Healthcare Costs

Nitrate contamination of drinking water in Wisconsin may cause nearly 300 cases a year of colorectal and other cancers and increase the risk of very premature births, very low birth weight and birth...

EWG News Roundup (10/25): 2019 National Tap Water Database, Nonstick Chemicals Taint Louisville Drinking Water and More

EWG News Roundup (10/25): Here's some news you can use going into the weekend.

Harmful BPA Replacements Contaminate Store Receipts

“Would you like your receipt?” Maybe not. Your exchange with the grocery store checkout clerk may seem like an odd time to worry about potentially harmful chemicals, but for decades, receipts printed...

Most Corn on the Cob Isn't GMO

The corn shoppers find on supermarket aisles and at farm stands is called “sweet corn” because it contains more sugar than its ancestor, field corn. People eat sweet corn fresh on or off the cob...


Murky Waters

Forty years after the Clean Water Act became law, the data are clear: Iowa's rivers and streams are still murky. The pollution that continues to degrade them has become a case study on the consequences of the most serious flaw in this historic and otherwise effective federal law: It does little or nothing to address agricultural pollution.

170 Million in U.S. Drink Radioactive Tap Water

Drinking water for more than 170 million Americans contains radioactive elements at levels that may increase the risk of cancer, according to an EWG analysis of 2010 to 2015 test results from public water systems nationwide.

EWG 2013 Farm Bill Platform

As Congress gets to work again in 2013 on renewing the farm bill, it has the opportunity to do more to support family farmers, protect the environment and encourage healthy diets, while ending...

Case Study: Corn Belt Communities Plagued by Nitrate in Tap Water

In December 2015, the 1,500 residents of Erie, Ill., received a warning that the community's tap water should not be given to babies under 6 months old, or used to mix formula or juice for those infants.

Just Released: EWG’s 2019 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce™

Kale has higher pesticide residues than nearly all other produce found on supermarket shelves, according to the Environmental Working Group's 2019 Dirty Dozen™.

‘Meets All Government Standards’: EWG’S 2019 Tap Water Database Details Unsafe Contamination in Communities Nationwide

Just because your community's tap water gets a passing grade from the government does not mean it's safe

Top Ten AgMag Stories for 2010

The 10 most important stories from EWG's AgMag blog in 2010.

PFAS Chemicals Harm the Immune System, Decrease Response to Vaccines, New EWG Review Finds

Toxic PFAS chemicals, notorious for contaminating drinking water supplies across the U.S., are harmful to nearly every human organ, and the immune system is particularly vulnerable. PFAS mixtures...

EWG’s Most-Read Stories of 2019 – And Some You May Have Missed

It was a year of both encouraging progress and frustrating setbacks for public health and the environment, as EWG continued to provide the information Americans need to protect themselves from toxic...

Farm Conservation on the Rise, But Also Threats to Drinking Water and Climate

The latest federal Census of Agriculture shows that more farms are adopting conservation practices that can help keep drinking water clean and slow climate change, but it also shows that much more...