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EWG's Tap Water Database — 2021 UPDATE

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Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)

City of Scottsdale

PCBs are synthetic chemicals banned in the U.S. since the 1970s because of their toxicity. PCBs contaminate water by leaching from landfills and hazardous waste clean-up sites. PCBs increase the risk of cancer. Read More.

Up until the late 1970s, PCBs were used widely as coolants and lubricants in transformers, capacitors and other electrical equipment. Currently, PCBs are widely detected in the general population. They build up and are stored in fatty tissues and fluids such as breast milk, and can be passed on to fetuses and infants during pregnancy and breast-feeding. In human epidemiological studies, PCBs have been associated with an elevated risk of breast and prostate cancers. Infants and children with higher PCB exposures during development score lower on measures of neurological function, ranging from decreased IQ scores to reduced hearing sensitivity. PCBs also affect hormones and damage the immune system.

 

44

Samples

0

Samples exceeding legal limit (MCL)

0

Samples exceeding
health guidelines

Testing results - average by year

 
YearAverage resultSamples takenDetectionsRange of results
2014ND210ND
2015ND30ND
2016N/A00N/A
2017ND200ND
2018N/A00N/A
2019N/A00N/A

ppb = parts per billion

State and national drinking water standards and health guidelines

EWG Health Guideline 0.09 ppb

The EWG Health Guideline of 0.09 ppb for PCBs was defined by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a public health goal, the level of a drinking water contaminant that does not pose a significant health risk. This health guideline protects against cancer.

EPA Maximum Contaminant
Level (MCL) 0.5 ppb

The legal limit for PCBs, established in 1991, was based on analytical detection limits at the time that the standard was set. This limit may not fully protect against the risk of cancer due to PCB exposure.

ppb = parts per billion

All test results

Date Lab ID Result
2014-02-054020547-02SND
2014-02-054020547-01ND
2014-02-054020547-04SND
2014-02-054020547-03SND
2014-02-114020994-01ND
2014-02-124020997-01SND
2014-02-134021207-01SND
2014-02-134021207-02SND
2014-03-134031189-01SND
2014-06-124061176-01AND
2014-08-054080527-01RE1ND
2014-08-054080529-01RE1ND
2014-08-054080531-01RE1ND
2014-08-074080785-01ND
2014-08-074080785-03ND
2014-08-074080785-02ND
2014-08-144081396-01ND
2014-08-214081971-01ND
2014-08-264082445-01ND
2014-08-274082450-01ND
2014-11-10201411100040PND
2015-01-265012122-01ND
2015-06-15201506150242PND
2015-07-282201507290355PND
2017-01-23201701230480PND
2017-01-31201701310415PND
2017-01-31201701310419PND
2017-03-13201703130443PND
2017-04-11201704121085PND
2017-04-18201704180733PND
2017-05-03201705030386PND
2017-05-03201705030393PND
2017-05-11201705110565PND
2017-05-25201705250273PND
2017-08-09201708090677PND
2017-10-02201710020518PND
2017-10-10201710100207PND
2017-10-10201710100211PND
2017-10-23201710230327PND
2017-10-31201711010965PND
2017-11-01201711010950PND
2017-11-01201711010957PND
2017-11-01201711010961PND
2017-11-09201711090343PND