The California Department of Public Health’s failure to adopt a 0.2 parts per billion standard for Chromium 6 in drinking water, as recommended by the State’s EPA’s Office of Environmental Health Hazardous Assessment, jeopardizes public health.
Scheduled to take effect July 1, the Department of Public Health’s proposed standard for Chromium 6 in public water supplies is 10 parts per billion — 500 times greater than California EPA’s 0.2 parts per billion goal.
“Chromium 6 is a harmful chemical that has the potential for increasing lung and kidney cancer — and for the state to sidestep this action undercuts efforts to ensure a clean, healthy water supply,” said Supervisor Antonovich. “While the state contends it’s ‘taking into consideration economic and technical feasibility as required by law,’ it failed to outline those considerations.”
The Federal Government has a standard of 100 parts per billion; however, the standard fails to distinguish between Chromium 6 and the naturally-occurring nutrient Chromium 3. The state also combines harmful and benign forms into a limit on total chromium, which it currently puts at 50 parts per billion.