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EWG's Tap Water Database — 2019 UPDATE

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Vinyl chloride

Sandy 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.

 

42

Samples

0

Samples exceeding legal limit (MCL)

0

Samples exceeding
health guidelines

Testing results - average by year

 
YearAverage resultSamples takenDetectionsRange of results
2012ND120ND
2013ND20ND
2014ND100ND
2015ND70ND
2016ND90ND
2017ND20ND

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