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EWG's Tap Water Database — 2019 UPDATE

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copper pipes

What About Copper?

Copper in tap water primarily comes from copper pipes. Water utilities are required to sample water at customers’ homes to determine if excessive copper might be a problem. The amount of copper in water allowed under the federal “action level” of 1.3 parts per million is unsafe for infants and individuals with a copper metabolism defect. Water directly from the tap, especially hot water, should not be used to prepare infant formula because hot water leaches more copper from the pipes.

The state of California established a public health goal for copper at 0.3 parts per million to protect infants and children from the gastrointestinal effects of excess copper. For more information, read EWG's report about copper in tap water.