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EWG's Tap Water Database — 2021 UPDATE

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Braintree Water and Sewer Department

EWG's drinking water quality report shows results of tests conducted by the water utility and provided to the Environmental Working Group by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, 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 2021 - March 2021), tap water provided by this water utility was in compliance with federal health-based drinking water standards.

Utility Details

  • Braintree, Massachusetts
  • Serves: 37,544
  • Data available: 2013-2020*
  • Source: Surface water
  • * 2013 testing is for chemicals in EPA's Third Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR-3) only. 2020/2021 testing is for chemicals in EPA's Fourth Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR-4) only.

Contaminants Detected

11

EXCEED
EWG HEALTH
GUIDELINES

26 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EWG Health Guidelines fill the gap in outdated government standards.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

Bromodichloromethane

Potential Effect: cancer281x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY16.9 ppb
EWG HEALTH GUIDELINE0.06 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
DETAILS
X

Bromodichloromethane

more about
this contaminant

Bromodichloromethane, one of the total trihalomethanes (TTHMs), is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. Bromodichloromethane and other disinfection byproducts increase the risk of cancer and may cause problems during pregnancy. Click here to read more about disinfection byproducts.

Bromodichloromethane was found at 281 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.06 ppb or less

This Utility

16.9 ppb

National Average

5.79 ppb

State Average

5.1 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2017-2019.
ppb = parts per billion

Health Risks

The EWG Health Guideline of 0.06 ppb for bromodichloromethane was proposed in 2018 by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a one-in-a-million lifetime risk of cancer. Values greater than one-in-a-million cancer risk level can result in increased cancer cases above one in a million people.

Pollution Sources

water treatment icon

Treatment Byproducts

Filtering Options

carbon filter icon

Activated Carbon

reverse osmosis icon

Reverse Osmosis

Chloroform

Potential Effect: cancer59x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY23.6 ppb
EWG HEALTH GUIDELINE0.4 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
DETAILS
X

Chloroform, one of the total trihalomethanes (TTHMs), is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. Chloroform and other disinfection byproducts increase the risk of cancer and may cause problems during pregnancy.

Chloroform was found at 59 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.4 ppb or less

This Utility

23.6 ppb

National Average

15.5 ppb

State Average

15.5 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2017-2019.
ppb = parts per billion

Health Risks

The EWG Health Guideline of 0.4 ppb for chloroform was proposed in 2018 by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a one-in-a-million lifetime risk of cancer. Values greater than one-in-a-million cancer risk level can result in increased cancer cases above one in a million people.

Pollution Sources

water treatment icon

Treatment Byproducts

Filtering Options

carbon filter icon

Activated Carbon

reverse osmosis icon

Reverse Osmosis

Dibromoacetic acid

Potential Effect: 29x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY1.15 ppb
EWG HEALTH GUIDELINE0.04 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
DETAILS
X

Dibromoacetic acid

more about
this contaminant

Dibromoacetic acid, one of the group of five haloacetic acids regulated by federal standards, is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. Haloacetic acids and other disinfection byproducts increase the risk of cancer and may cause problems during pregnancy. Click here to read more about disinfection byproducts.

Dibromoacetic acid was found at 29 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.04 ppb or less

This Utility

1.15 ppb

National Average

1.1 ppb

State Average

0.499 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2017-2019.
ppb = parts per billion

Health Risks

The EWG Health Guideline of 0.04 ppb for dibromoacetic acid 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

Dibromochloromethane

Potential Effect: cancer82x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY8.17 ppb
EWG HEALTH GUIDELINE0.1 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
DETAILS
X

Dibromochloromethane

more about
this contaminant

Dibromochloromethane, one of the total trihalomethanes (TTHMs), is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. Dibromochloromethane and other disinfection byproducts increase the risk of cancer and may cause problems during pregnancy. Click here to read more about disinfection byproducts.

Dibromochloromethane was found at 82 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.1 ppb or less

This Utility

8.17 ppb

National Average

3.29 ppb

State Average

2.21 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2017-2019.
ppb = parts per billion

Health Risks

The EWG Health Guideline of 0.1 ppb for dibromochloromethane was proposed in 2018 by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a one-in-a-million lifetime risk of cancer. Values greater than one-in-a-million cancer risk level can result in increased cancer cases above one in a million people.

Pollution Sources

water treatment icon

Treatment Byproducts

Filtering Options

carbon filter icon

Activated Carbon

reverse osmosis icon

Reverse Osmosis

Dichloroacetic acid

Potential Effect: cancer26x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY5.18 ppb
EWG HEALTH GUIDELINE0.2 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
DETAILS
X

Dichloroacetic acid

more about
this contaminant

Dichloroacetic acid, one of the group of five haloacetic acids regulated by federal standards, is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. Haloacetic acids and other disinfection byproducts increase the risk of cancer and may cause problems during pregnancy. Click here to read more about disinfection byproducts.

Dichloroacetic acid was found at 26 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.2 ppb or less

This Utility

5.18 ppb

National Average

7.97 ppb

State Average

7.23 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2017-2019.
ppb = parts per billion

Health Risks

The EWG Health Guideline of 0.2 ppb for dichloroacetic acid was proposed in 2020 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.a one-in-a-million lifetime risk of cancer. Values greater than one-in-a-million cancer risk level can result in increased cancer cases above one in a million people.

Pollution Sources

water treatment icon

Treatment Byproducts

Filtering Options

carbon filter icon

Activated Carbon

reverse osmosis icon

Reverse Osmosis

Haloacetic acids (HAA5)†

Potential Effect: cancer131x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY13.1 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 131 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.1 ppb or less

This Utility

13.1 ppb

Legal Limit

60 ppb

National Average

17.1 ppb

State Average

15.3 ppb
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2017-2019.
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 one-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

Haloacetic acids (HAA9)†

Potential Effect: 576x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY34.5 ppb
EWG HEALTH GUIDELINE0.06 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
DETAILS
X

Haloacetic acids (HAA9)

more about
this contaminant

Haloacetic acids are formed when disinfectants such as chlorine are added to tap water. The group of nine haloacetic acids includes monochloroacetic acid, dichloroacetic acid, trichloroacetic acid, monobromoacetic acid and dibromoacetic acid, which are regulated as a group by the federal government (HAA5); and bromochloroacetic acid, bromodichloroacetic acid, chlorodibromoacetic acid, and tribromoacetic acid.

Haloacetic acids (HAA9) was found at 576 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.06 ppb or less

This Utility

34.5 ppb

National Average

23.7 ppb

State Average

22.3 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2017-2021.
ppb = parts per billion

Health Risks

The EWG Health Guideline of 0.06 ppb for the group of nine haloacetic acids, or HAA9, was defined in a peer-reviewed scientific study by EWG and represents a one-in-a-million lifetime cancer risk level as . 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

Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS)

Potential Effect: 2.2x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY2.21 ppt
EWG HEALTH GUIDELINE1 ppt
NO LEGAL LIMIT
DETAILS
X

Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS)

more about
this contaminant

Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) is a member of a group of perfluorinated chemicals used in many consumer products. PFOS and other perfluorinated chemicals can cause serious health effects, including cancer, endocrine disruption, accelerated puberty, liver and immune system damage, and thyroid changes. These chemicals are persistent in the environment and they accumulate in people. Click here to read more about perfluorinated chemicals.

Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) was found at 2.2 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

1 ppt or less

This Utility

2.21 ppt

National Average

0.908 ppt

State Average

0.547 ppt
NO LEGAL LIMIT
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2013-2019.
ppt = parts per trillion

Health Risks

The EWG Health Guideline of 1 ppt for PFOS was defined by EWG based on studies by Phillipe Grandjean of Harvard University and many other independent researchers who found reduced effectiveness of vaccines and adverse impacts on mammary gland development from exposure to PFOA and PFOS, the two PFAS most widely detected in drinking water. This health guideline applies to the entire class of PFAS detected in water.

Pollution Sources

industry icon

Industry

urban area icon

Runoff & Sprawl

Filtering Options

carbon filter icon

Activated Carbon

reverse osmosis icon

Reverse Osmosis

Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA)

Potential Effect: cancer210x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY1.47 ppt
EWG HEALTH GUIDELINE0.007 ppt
NO LEGAL LIMIT
DETAILS
X

Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA)

more about
this contaminant

Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) is a member of a group of perfluorinated chemicals used in many consumer products. PFOA and other perfluorinated chemicals can cause serious health effects, including cancer, endocrine disruption, accelerated puberty, liver and immune system damage, and thyroid changes. These chemicals are persistent in the environment and they accumulate in people. Click here to read more about perfluorinated chemicals.

Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) was found at 210 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.007 ppt or less

This Utility

1.47 ppt

National Average

1.15 ppt

State Average

0.303 ppt
NO LEGAL LIMIT
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2013-2019.
ppt = parts per trillion

Health Risks

The EWG Health Guideline of 0.007 ppt for PFOA was defined by 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 cancer.

Pollution Sources

industry icon

Industry

urban area icon

Runoff & Sprawl

Filtering Options

carbon filter icon

Activated Carbon

reverse osmosis icon

Reverse Osmosis

Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs)†

Potential Effect: cancer351x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY52.7 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 351 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.15 ppb or less

This Utility

52.7 ppb

Legal Limit

80 ppb

National Average

29.7 ppb

State Average

26.7 ppb
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2017-2019.
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

Trichloroacetic acid

Potential Effect: cancer78x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY7.82 ppb
EWG HEALTH GUIDELINE0.1 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
DETAILS
X

Trichloroacetic acid

more about
this contaminant

Trichloroacetic acid, one of the group of five haloacetic acids regulated by federal standards, is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. Haloacetic acids and other disinfection byproducts increase the risk of cancer and may cause problems during pregnancy. Click here to read more about disinfection byproducts.

Trichloroacetic acid was found at 78 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.1 ppb or less

This Utility

7.82 ppb

National Average

6.62 ppb

State Average

6.58 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
The state and national averages were calculated using the averages of the contaminant measurements for each utility in 2017-2019.
ppb = parts per billion

Health Risks

The EWG Health Guideline of 0.1 ppb for trichloroacetic acid was proposed in 2020 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.a one-in-a-million lifetime risk of cancer. Values greater than one-in-a-million cancer risk level can result in increased cancer cases above one in a million people.

Pollution Sources

water treatment icon

Treatment Byproducts

Filtering Options

carbon filter icon

Activated Carbon

reverse osmosis icon

Reverse Osmosis

Includes chemicals detected in 2017-2019 for which annual utility averages exceeded an EWG-selected health guideline established by a federal or state public health authority; chemicals detected under the EPA's Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR 4) program in 2017 to 2020 (and subsequent testing when available), for which annual utility averages exceeded a health guideline established by a federal or state public health authority.

† HAA5 is a contaminant group that includes monochloroacetic acid, dichloroacetic acid, trichloroacetic acid, monobromoacetic acid and dibromoacetic acid. HAA9 is a contaminant group that includes the chemicals in HAA5 and bromochloroacetic acid, bromodichloroacetic acid, chlorodibromoacetic acid and tribromoacetic acid. TTHM is a contaminant group that includes bromodichloromethane, bromoform, chloroform and dibromochloromethane.


Other Contaminants Tested


Chemicals tested for but not detected from 2014 to 2019:

1,1,1,2-Tetrachloroethane , 1,1,1-Trichloroethane , 1,1,2,2-Tetrachloroethane , 1,1,2-Trichloroethane , 1,1-Dichloroethane , 1,1-Dichloroethylene , 1,1-Dichloropropene , 1,2,3-Trichlorobenzene , 1,2,3-Trichloropropane , 1,2,4-Trichlorobenzene , 1,2,4-Trimethylbenzene , 1,2-Dibromo-3-chloropropane (DBCP) , 1,2-Dichloroethane , 1,2-Dichloropropane , 1,3,5-Trimethylbenzene , 1,3-Butadiene , 1,3-Dichloropropane , 1,3-Dichloropropene , 1,4-Dioxane , 1-butanol , 11-chloroeicosafluoro-3-oxaundecane-1-sulfonic aci, 2,2-Dichloropropane , 2,4,5-TP (Silvex) , 2,4-D , 2-methoxyethanol , 2-propen-1-ol , 3-Hydroxycarbofuran , 4,8-dioxa-3H-perfluorononanoic acid (ADONA) , 9-chlorohexadecafluoro-3-oxanone-1-sulfonic acid (, Alachlor (Lasso) , Aldicarb , Aldicarb sulfone , Aldicarb sulfoxide , Aldrin , Alpha-hexachlorocyclohexane , Antimony , Arsenic , Atrazine , Benzene , Benzo[a]pyrene , Beryllium , Bromobenzene , Bromochloromethane , Bromomethane , Butachlor , Butylated hydroxyanisole , Cadmium , Carbaryl , Carbofuran , Carbon tetrachloride , Chlorate , Chlordane , Chlorodifluoromethane , Chloroethane , Chloromethane , Chlorpyriphos , Chromium (hexavalent) , cis-1,2-Dichloroethylene , Cobalt , Cyanide , Dalapon , Di(2-ethylhexyl) adipate , Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate , Dibromomethane , Dicamba , Dichlorodifluoromethane , Dieldrin , Dimethipin , Dinoseb , Endrin , Ethoprop , Ethylbenzene , Ethylene dibromide , Germanium , Heptachlor , Heptachlor epoxide , Hexachlorobenzene (HCB) , Hexachlorobutadiene , Hexachlorocyclopentadiene , Hexafluoropropylene oxide dimer acid (HFPO-DA) , Isopropylbenzene , Lindane , m-Dichlorobenzene , Mercury (inorganic) , Methomyl , Methoxychlor , Metolachlor , Metribuzin , Molybdenum , Monobromoacetic acid , Monochlorobenzene (chlorobenzene) , MTBE , n-Butylbenzene , N-ethyl perfluorooctane sulfonamido acetic acid (N, N-methyl perfluorooctanesulfonamidoacetic acid , n-Propylbenzene , Naphthalene , Nitrite , o-Chlorotoluene , o-Dichlorobenzene , o-toluidine , Oxamyl (Vydate) , Oxyflurofen , p-Chlorotoluene , p-Dichlorobenzene , p-Isopropyltoluene , Pentachlorophenol , Perchlorate , Perfluorodecanoic acid (PFDA) , Perfluorododecanoic acid (PFDoA) , Perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA) , Perfluorotetradecanoic acid (PFTA) , Perfluorotridecanoic acid (PFTrDA) , Perfluoroundecanoic acid (PFUnA) , Permethrin , Picloram , Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) , Profenofos , Propachlor , Quinoline , sec-Butylbenzene , Selenium , Silver , Simazine , Styrene , Tebuconazole , tert-Butylbenzene , Tetrachloroethylene (perchloroethylene) , Thallium , Toluene , Toxaphene , trans-1,2-Dichloroethylene , Tribufos , Trichloroethylene , Trichlorofluoromethane , Vinyl chloride , Xylenes (total)

Braintree Water and Sewer Department compliance with legally mandated federal standards:

  • From April 2019 to March 2021, Braintree Water and Sewer Department complied with health-based drinking water standards.

Information in this section on Braintree Water and Sewer Department 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
Bromodichloromethane
Chloroform
Dibromoacetic acid
Dibromochloromethane
Dichloroacetic acid
Haloacetic acids (HAA5)
Haloacetic acids (HAA9)
Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS)
Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA)
Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs)
Trichloroacetic acid
OTHER CONTAMINANTS
DETECTED
Aluminum
Barium
Bromoform
Chromium (total)
Dichloromethane (methylene chloride)
Fluoride
Manganese
Monochloroacetic acid
Nitrate
Perfluorobutane sulfonate (PFBS)
Perfluoroheptanoic acid (PFHPA)
Perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHXS)
Perfluorohexanoic Acid (PFHxA)
Strontium
Vanadium

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