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EWG's Tap Water Database — 2019 UPDATE

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Elk City Water and Sewer Association

EWG's drinking water quality report shows results of tests conducted by the water utility and provided to the Environmental Working Group by the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality, as well as information from the U.S. EPA Enforcement and Compliance History database (ECHO). For the latest quarter assessed by the U.S. EPA (January 2019 - March 2019), tap water provided by this water utility was in serious violation federal health-based drinking water standards.

Utility Details

  • Elk City, Idaho
  • Serves: 320
  • Data available: 2012—2017
  • Source: Surface water

Contaminants Detected

3

EXCEED
EWG HEALTH
GUIDELINES

4 Total Contaminants

  • Legal does not necessarily equal safe. Getting a passing grade from the federal government does not mean the water meets the latest health guidelines.
  • Legal limits for contaminants in tap water have not been updated in almost 20 years.
  • The best way to ensure clean tap water is to keep pollution out of source water in the first place.

Legal ≠ Safe

EWG Health Guidelines fill the gap in outdated government standards.

The federal government’s legal limits are not health-protective. The EPA has not set a new tap water standard in almost 20 years, and some standards are more than 40 years old.

Contaminants Detected

Haloacetic acids (HAA5)†

Potential Effect: cancer329x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY32.9 ppb
EWG HEALTH GUIDELINE0.1 ppb
LEGAL LIMIT60 ppb
DETAILS
X

Haloacetic acids (HAA5)

more about
this contaminant

Haloacetic acids are formed when disinfectants such as chlorine are added to tap water. The group of five haloacetic acids regulated by federal standards includes monochloroacetic acid, dichloroacetic acid, trichloroacetic acid, monobromoacetic acid and dibromoacetic acid.

Haloacetic acids (HAA5) was found at 329 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.1 ppb or less

This Utility

32.9 ppb

Legal Limit

60 ppb

National Average

17.2 ppb

State Average

6.53 ppb
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2015-2017.
ppb = parts per billion

Health Risks

The EWG Health Guideline of 0.1 ppb for the group of five haloacetic acids, or HAA5, was defined in a peer-reviewed scientific study by EWG and represents a on-in-a-million lifetime cancer risk level. This health guideline protects against cancer.

Pollution Sources

water treatment icon

Treatment Byproducts

Filtering Options

carbon filter icon

Activated Carbon

reverse osmosis icon

Reverse Osmosis

Radium, combined (-226 & -228)

Potential Effect: cancer15x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY0.75 pCi/L
EWG HEALTH GUIDELINE0.05 pCi/L
LEGAL LIMIT5 pCi/L
DETAILS
X

Radium, combined (-226 & -228)

more about
this contaminant

Radium is a radioactive element that causes bone cancer and other cancers. It can occur naturally in groundwater, and oil and gas extraction activities such as hydraulic fracturing can elevate concentrations.

Radium, combined (-226 & -228) was found at 15 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.05 pCi/L or less

This Utility

0.75 pCi/L

Legal Limit

5 pCi/L

National Average

0.47 pCi/L

State Average

0.51 pCi/L
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2012-2017.
pCi/L = picocuries per liter

Health Risks

EWG applied the health guideline of 0.05 pCi/L, defined by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a public health goal for radium-226, to radium-226 and radium-228 combined. This health guideline protects against cancer.

Pollution Sources

industry icon

Industry

naturally occuring icon

Naturally Occurring

Filtering Options

reverse osmosis icon

Reverse Osmosis

ion exchange icon

Ion Exchange

Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs)†

Potential Effect: cancer487x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY73.1 ppb
EWG HEALTH GUIDELINE0.15 ppb
LEGAL LIMIT80 ppb
DETAILS
X

Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs)

more about
this contaminant

Trihalomethanes are cancer-causing contaminants that form during water treatment with chlorine and other disinfectants. The total trihalomethanes group includes four chemicals: chloroform, bromodichloromethane, dibromochloromethane and bromoform.

Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs) was found at 487 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.15 ppb or less

This Utility

73.1 ppb

Legal Limit

80 ppb

National Average

30.1 ppb

State Average

10.3 ppb
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2015-2017.
ppb = parts per billion

Health Risks

The health guideline of 0.15 parts per billion, or ppb, for the group of four trihalomethanes, or THM4/TTHM, was defined in a peer-reviewed scientific study by EWG and represents a one-in-one-million lifetime cancer risk level.

Pollution Sources

water treatment icon

Treatment Byproducts

Filtering Options

carbon filter icon

Activated Carbon

reverse osmosis icon

Reverse Osmosis

Includes chemicals detected in 2015-2017 for which annual utility averages exceeded an EWG-selected health guideline established by a federal or state public health authority; radiological contaminants detected between 2012 and 2017.

† HAA5 is a contaminant group that includes monochloroacetic acid, dichloroacetic acid, trichloroacetic acid, monobromoacetic acid and dibromoacetic acid. TTHM is a contaminant group that includes bromodichloromethane, bromoform, chloroform and dibromochloromethane.


Other Contaminants Tested


Chemicals tested for but not detected from 2012 to 2017:

Combined uranium

Elk City Water and Sewer Association compliance with legally mandated federal standards:

  • From April 2016 to March 2019, Elk City Water and Sewer Association did not comply with health-based drinking water standards.
  • 12 QUARTERS
    in violation of any federal drinking water standard from April 2016 to March 2019
  • Over the last 3 years this water utility has spent
    5 QUARTERS
    in significant violation of federal drinking water standards

Information in this section on Elk City Water and Sewer Association comes from the U.S. EPA Enforcement and Compliance History Online database (ECHO).

LEARN MORE ABOUT THIS UTILITY

Water Filters That Can Reduce Contaminant Levels

ContaminantActivated Carbonactivated carbonReverse Osmosisreverse osmosisIon Exchangeion exchange
CONTAMINANTS ABOVE
HEALTH GUIDELINES
Haloacetic acids (HAA5)
Radium, combined (-226 & -228)
Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs)
OTHER CONTAMINANTS
DETECTED
Nitrate

Take Action

Contact Your Local Official

One of the best ways to push for cleaner water is to hold accountable the elected officials who have a say in water quality – from city hall and the state legislature to Congress all the way to the Oval Office – by asking questions and demanding answers.

LEARN MORE

Filter Out Contaminants

Check out our recommendations for filters to protect your water against the detected contaminants.

EWG’S WATER FILTER GUIDE