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EWG's Tap Water Database — 2019 UPDATE

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Vinyl chloride

Salt Lake City Water System

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.

 

118

Samples

0

Samples exceeding legal limit (MCL)

0

Samples exceeding
health guidelines

Testing results - average by year

 
YearAverage resultSamples takenDetectionsRange of results
2012ND60ND
2013ND90ND
2014ND160ND
2015ND240ND
2016ND290ND
2017ND340ND

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 Result
2012-05-25ND
2012-06-01ND
2012-06-05ND
2012-06-29ND
2012-07-17ND
2012-07-17ND
2013-01-25ND
2013-05-02ND
2013-05-10ND
2013-05-15ND
2013-05-15ND
2013-06-18ND
2013-06-25ND
2013-06-28ND
2013-06-28ND
2014-01-10ND
2014-05-30ND
2014-05-30ND
2014-06-03ND
2014-06-06ND
2014-06-11ND
2014-06-25ND
2014-06-25ND
2014-07-01ND
2014-07-01ND
2014-07-02ND
2014-07-09ND
2014-07-09ND
2014-07-09ND
2014-07-09ND
2014-07-11ND
2015-01-23ND
2015-01-30ND
2015-01-30ND
2015-02-27ND
2015-05-08ND
2015-05-15ND
2015-06-19ND
2015-06-19ND
2015-06-19ND
2015-06-19ND
2015-06-29ND
2015-06-30ND
2015-06-30ND
2015-06-30ND
2015-07-07ND
2015-07-10ND
2015-07-10ND
2015-07-10ND
2015-07-10ND
2015-08-07ND
2015-09-04ND
2015-09-18ND
2015-09-29ND
2015-09-29ND
2016-01-08ND
2016-01-08ND
2016-01-15ND
2016-02-12ND
2016-02-26ND
2016-03-25ND
2016-05-18ND
2016-05-18ND
2016-05-18ND
2016-05-19ND
2016-05-19ND
2016-06-03ND
2016-06-03ND
2016-06-10ND
2016-06-10ND
2016-06-10ND
2016-06-24ND
2016-06-24ND
2016-06-24ND
2016-06-28ND
2016-06-28ND
2016-07-01ND
2016-07-08ND
2016-07-08ND
2016-07-13ND
2016-07-29ND
2016-07-29ND
2016-07-29ND
2016-08-05ND
2017-01-13ND
2017-01-16ND
2017-01-16ND
2017-01-16ND
2017-03-03ND
2017-03-06ND
2017-03-24ND
2017-03-27ND
2017-06-09ND
2017-06-09ND
2017-06-09ND
2017-06-12ND
2017-06-16ND
2017-06-16ND
2017-06-19ND
2017-06-19ND
2017-06-20ND
2017-06-21ND
2017-06-23ND
2017-06-30ND
2017-06-30ND
2017-06-30ND
2017-07-03ND
2017-07-14ND
2017-07-14ND
2017-07-21ND
2017-07-21ND
2017-07-21ND
2017-07-24ND
2017-07-25ND
2017-08-08ND
2017-08-08ND
2017-08-22ND
2017-08-22ND