EWG's Tap Water Database — 2019 UPDATE


Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate

Syracuse City

Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, or DEHP, is a softener added to PVC plastics. Phthalates are hormone disruptors that target the male reproductive system. Read More.

DEHP can cross the placenta and disrupt steroid hormone synthesis, and may lead to cancer. In laboratory animals, exposure to DEHP during pregnancy harms fetal developmental and causes abnormalities in the male reproductive tract. Human epidemiological studies show certain phthalates, especially DEHP, are associated with reduced anogenital distance in human male infants, which is a measure of adverse developmental effects in human male infants exposed prenatally to endocrine disrupting chemicals. DEHP may also interfere with signaling related to the timing of birth and may have adverse effects on the immune system.





Samples exceeding legal limit (MCL)


Samples exceeding
health guidelines

Testing results - average by year

YearAverage resultSamples takenDetectionsRange of results
20130.950 ppb110.950 ppb
20160.790 ppb110.790 ppb

ppb = parts per billion

State and national drinking water standards and health guidelines

EWG Health Guideline 3 ppb

The EWG Health Guideline of 3 ppb for di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate was defined by the Environmental Protection Agency as a one-in-a-million lifetime risk of cancer. Values greater than one-in-a-million cancer risk level can result in increased cancer cases above one in a million people.

EPA Maximum Contaminant
Level (MCL) 6 ppb

The legal limit for di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, established in 1992, was based on analytical detection limits at the time that the standard was set.

ppb = parts per billion

All test results

Date Lab ID Result
2012-05-082012 SOCS SYRND
2013-05-142013 SOCS SYRACU0.950 ppb
2014-05-132Q2014 SOCS SYRND
2015-05-132015 SOCS SYRND
2016-05-102016 SOCS SYR0.790 ppb
2017-05-102Q2017 SOCS SYRND