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EWG's Tap Water Database — 2021 UPDATE

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Styrene

Foxcroft School

Styrene is a volatile cancer-causing chemical used for manufacturing Styrofoam (polystyrene) and other plastics. Releases from industrial production sites and hazardous waste landfills cause styrene contamination in drinking water. Read More.

In addition to increasing the risk of cancer, styrene can also damage the liver and the nervous system. California set a public health goal for styrene in drinking water at 0.5 parts per billion. The federal Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) allows up to 100 parts per billion of styrene in water, which is 200 times more than the California recommended level.

Click here to read more about carcinogenic VOCs.

 

34

Samples

0

Samples exceeding legal limit (MCL)

0

Samples exceeding
health guidelines

Testing results - average by year

 
YearAverage resultSamples takenDetectionsRange of results
2014ND50ND
2015ND80ND
2016ND100ND
2017ND80ND
2018ND10ND
2019ND20ND

ppb = parts per billion

State and national drinking water standards and health guidelines

EWG Health Guideline 0.5 ppb

The EWG Health Guideline of 0.5 ppb for styrene 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) 100 ppb

The legal limit for styrene, established in 1991, was based on a toxicity study in laboratory animals conducted in the 1970s. This limit may not fully protect against the risk of cancer due to styrene exposure.

ppb = parts per billion

All test results

Date Lab ID Result
2014-01-28E131205516ND
2014-04-10E140302161ND
2014-07-28E140602132ND
2014-10-27E140904165ND
2014-10-27E140904166ND
2015-01-14VA010-DCLSND
2015-01-14VA010-DCLSND
2015-04-15VA010-DCLSND
2015-04-28VA010-DCLSND
2015-08-03VA010-DCLSND
2015-08-26VA010-DCLSND
2015-10-13VA010-DCLSND
2015-10-13VA010-DCLSND
2016-02-03E160100828ND
2016-02-03E160100824ND
2016-04-06E160203378ND
2016-04-06E160203382ND
2016-07-25E160601592ND
2016-07-27E160601580ND
2016-10-19E160903973ND
2016-10-19E160903970ND
2016-10-19E160903980ND
2016-10-19E160903981ND
2017-02-01E161200819ND
2017-02-01E161200822ND
2017-05-15E170203789ND
2017-05-15E170203793ND
2017-08-15E170503920ND
2017-08-15E170503922ND
2017-11-28E170903299ND
2017-11-28E170903294ND
2018-03-26E171203487ND
2019-03-26E181206035ND
2019-09-10E190706394ND