Menu

EWG's Tap Water Database — 2019 UPDATE

Donate

Vinyl chloride

City of Kerrville

Vinyl chloride is a known human carcinogen used for production of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plastics. Discharges from plastics manufacturing can contaminate drinking water with vinyl chloride. Read More.

Exposure to vinyl chloride increases the risk of cancer and can damage the liver and nervous system. The California public health goal of 0.05 parts per billion, set to protect against cancer, is 40 times lower than the amount allowed by the federal government, which is a Maximum Contaminant Level of 2 parts per billion.

Plastic pipes made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and chlorinated PVC (CPVC) are widely used for drinking water distribution lines and internal plumbing, raising concern about vinyl chloride contamination of drinking water. A study published in 2011 by Ryan Walter of Cornell University School of Civil and Environmental Engineering suggested that small amounts of vinyl chloride can leach from PVC pipes. Vinyl chloride can also form in the pipes as a result of water disinfection with chlorine.

In an assessment completed in 2000, California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment stated that drinking water is not a significant source of exposure to vinyl chloride for the general population.

Click here to read more about carcinogenic VOCs.

 

50

Samples

0

Samples exceeding legal limit (MCL)

0

Samples exceeding
health guidelines

Testing results - average by year

 
YearAverage resultSamples takenDetectionsRange of results
2012ND30ND
2013ND230ND
2014ND10ND
2015ND60ND
2016ND50ND
2017ND120ND

ppb = parts per billion

State and national drinking water standards and health guidelines

EWG Health Guideline 0.05 ppb

The EWG Health Guideline of 0.05 ppb for vinyl chloride 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) 2 ppb

The legal limit for vinyl chloride, established in 1987, 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 vinyl chloride exposure.

ppb = parts per billion

All test results

Date Lab ID Result
2012-04-041204117005ND
2012-07-251207951005ND
2012-10-041210228005ND
2013-01-23AC08519ND
2013-01-23AC08521ND
2013-01-23AC08522ND
2013-01-23AC08518ND
2013-01-23AC08515ND
2013-01-23AC08520ND
2013-04-11AC16399ND
2013-04-11AC16404ND
2013-04-11AC16403ND
2013-04-11AC16406ND
2013-04-11AC16405ND
2013-04-11AC16402ND
2013-07-29AC26104ND
2013-07-29AC26023ND
2013-07-29AC26024ND
2013-07-29AC26022ND
2013-07-29AC26021ND
2013-07-29AC26049ND
2013-07-29AC26050ND
2013-10-17AC32366ND
2013-10-17AC32367ND
2013-10-17AC32364ND
2013-10-17AC32365ND
2014-07-16AC59841ND
2015-04-15AC88380ND
2015-07-20AD00201ND
2015-07-20AD00203ND
2015-08-14AD04430ND
2015-08-14AD04432ND
2015-08-14AD04428ND
2016-02-01AD21129ND
2016-04-18AD33348ND
2016-07-05AD42974ND
2016-07-05AD42962ND
2016-10-24AD54358ND
2017-04-06AD78768ND
2017-05-08AD83088ND
2017-05-08AD83086ND
2017-05-09AD83357ND
2017-05-09AD83359ND
2017-05-09AD83355ND
2017-07-05AD88339ND
2017-07-05AD88333ND
2017-07-05AD88335ND
2017-07-05AD88337ND
2017-10-09AD99820ND
2017-10-09AD99818ND