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EWG's Tap Water Database — 2019 UPDATE

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City of Asheville

EWG's drinking water quality report shows results of tests conducted by the water utility and provided to the Environmental Working Group by the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources, 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 compliance with federal health-based drinking water standards.

Utility Details

  • Asheville, North Carolina
  • Serves: 124,300
  • Data available: 2012—2017
  • Source: Surface water

Contaminants Detected

6

EXCEED
EWG HEALTH
GUIDELINES

17 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EWG Health Guidelines fill the gap in outdated government standards.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: cancer39x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY2.37 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 39 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.06 ppb or less

This Utility

2.37 ppb

National Average

5.8 ppb

State Average

8.82 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
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 0.06 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: cancer67x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY26.9 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 67 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.4 ppb or less

This Utility

26.9 ppb

National Average

15.1 ppb

State Average

25.3 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
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 0.4 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

Dichloroacetic acid

Potential Effect: cancer72x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY14.4 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 72 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.2 ppb or less

This Utility

14.4 ppb

National Average

7.82 ppb

State Average

11.8 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
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 0.2 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: cancer319x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY31.9 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 319 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.1 ppb or less

This Utility

31.9 ppb

Legal Limit

60 ppb

National Average

17.2 ppb

State Average

22.7 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

Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs)†

Potential Effect: cancer195x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY29.3 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 195 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.15 ppb or less

This Utility

29.3 ppb

Legal Limit

80 ppb

National Average

30.1 ppb

State Average

39.8 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

Trichloroacetic acid

Potential Effect: cancer165x EWG'S HEALTH GUIDELINE
THIS UTILITY16.5 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 165 times above EWG's Health Guideline.

EWG Health Guideline

0.1 ppb or less

This Utility

16.5 ppb

National Average

6.42 ppb

State Average

8.88 ppb
NO LEGAL LIMIT
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 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 2015-2017 for which annual utility averages exceeded an EWG-selected 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. TTHM is a contaminant group that includes bromodichloromethane, bromoform, chloroform and dibromochloromethane.

Other Contaminants Tested


Contaminants detected between 2012 and 2014 and were not part of EPA's UCMR-3 testing program or radiologicals:

Bromoform, Dibromochloromethane

 

Chemicals tested for but not detected from 2012 to 2017:

1,1,1-Trichloroethane, 1,1,2-Trichloroethane, 1,1-Dichloroethane, 1,1-Dichloroethylene, 1,2,3-Trichloropropane, 1,2,4-Trichlorobenzene, 1,2-Dibromo-3-chloropropane (DBCP), 1,2-Dichloroethane, 1,2-Dichloropropane, 1,3-Butadiene, 1,4-Dioxane, 17-beta-Estradiol, 2,4,5-TP (Silvex), 2,4-D, Alachlor (Lasso), Antimony, Arsenic, Asbestos, Atrazine, Barium, Benzene, Benzo[a]pyrene, Beryllium, Bromate, Bromochloromethane, Bromomethane, Cadmium, Carbofuran, Carbon tetrachloride, Chlordane, Chlorodifluoromethane, Chloromethane, Chromium (total), cis-1,2-Dichloroethylene, Cobalt, Combined uranium, Cyanide, Dalapon, Di(2-ethylhexyl) adipate, Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, Dichloromethane (methylene chloride), Dinoseb, Endrin, Equilin, Estriol, Estrone, Ethinyl estradiol, Ethylbenzene, Ethylene dibromide, Heptachlor epoxide, Hexachlorobenzene (HCB), Hexachlorocyclopentadiene, Lindane, Mercury (inorganic), Methoxychlor, Molybdenum, Monochlorobenzene (chlorobenzene), Nitrate, o-Dichlorobenzene, Oxamyl (Vydate), p-Dichlorobenzene, Pentachlorophenol, Perfluorobutane sulfonate (PFBS), Perfluoroheptanoic acid (PFHPA), Perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHXS), Perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA), Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), Picloram, Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), Radium, combined (-226 & -228), Selenium, Simazine, Styrene, Testosterone, Tetrachloroethylene (perchloroethylene), Thallium, Toluene, Toxaphene, trans-1,2-Dichloroethylene, Trichloroethylene, Vinyl chloride, Xylenes (total)

City of Asheville compliance with legally mandated federal standards:

  • From April 2016 to March 2019, City of Asheville complied with health-based drinking water standards.

Information in this section on City of Asheville 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
Dichloroacetic acid
Haloacetic acids (HAA5)
Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs)
Trichloroacetic acid
OTHER CONTAMINANTS
DETECTED
4-Androstene-3,17-dione
Chlorate
Chromium (hexavalent)
Dibromoacetic acid
Fluoride
Heptachlor
Manganese
Monobromoacetic acid
Monochloroacetic acid
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