EPA Orders Systems to Lower Arsenic in Drinking Water

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has ordered 11 public drinking water systems throughout the state of California to reduce the level of arsenic in their respective drinking water systems or face penalties of up to $32,500 per day for each violation.

EPA's orders require the public drinking water systems to develop and meet a schedule to comply with the federal Safe Drinking Water Act's arsenic standard of 10 ppb.

"Providing people with safe drinking water is essential and public water systems must take the steps necessary to comply with all federal standards," said Alexis Strauss, the Water Division director for the EPA's Pacific Southwest region.

The EPA has issued orders to the following California public water systems:

• City of Delano, Kern County

• Tranquility Irrigation District public water system, Fresno County

• Armona Community Service District public water system, Kings County

• Public Water System located at 21600 Eight Street East, Sonoma County

• Groskopf Warehousing & Logistics public water system, Sonoma County

• Lancelot Mobile Home Park public water system, Santa Rosa

• Rancho de Sonoma Mobile Home Park, Sonoma County

• Riverdale Public Utility District, Fresno County

• J Vineyards & Winery, Sonoma County

• Arvin Community Services District, Kern County

• Pla-Vada Woodlands Community Association, Nevada County

Arsenic, a naturally occurring mineral found throughout the United States, is primarily found in groundwater and is a known carcinogen. Drinking high levels of arsenic over many years can increase the chance of lung, bladder, and skin cancers, as well as heart disease, diabetes, and neurological damage. Arsenic inhibits the body's ability to fight off cancer and other diseases.

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