The Rise in Lead poisoning and Toxic waterways.

"It's a good idea to test our water now. Lead is a huge concern but consider all the other toxins now in our waterways."

ZetaTalk: Safe Water
Note: written on Aug 15, 1995

The Earth, in its abundance, currently provides man with what appears to be limitless fresh water. Except where man has defiantly chosen to set up housekeeping in the middle of a desert or ocean, fresh, pure water is not expected to be a problem. It rushes by in streams and rivers, pools in lakes, and if not found on the surface can almost always be found in the underground rivers and lakes. Should one be concerned about the purity of the water on the surface, one could always catch the rain which falls, unsullied, from the sky. Up until recently man's only worry about water was how to transport it and how to avoid it during times of flooding. Since the Industrial Age man has merrily poured poisons into his drinking water, both on the surface and through seepage into the ground water. Bottled water has become more than a fad.

After the cataclysms mankind's problems with his water supply will take a quantum leap. Water, from all sources, may be poisoned, with the old standby, rainwater, failing to provide potable water. During the pole shift volcanoes, old and new, will violently explode. The resulting ash will sift down from the upper atmosphere for decades, poisoning ground water. Humans driven to drink this gritty water will find more than grit between their teeth, they will find their nervous system beginning to fail them, their eye sight fading, and their digestive system intolerant of any food they may find. We are speaking here primarily of lead poisoning, which is not a problem man expects from the water nature provides. Lead settles and over eons settles down out of the way, but after a cataclysm the lead heavy mantle has been spewed out over the landscape, most of this vomit in the form of fine billowing dust.

Will the ground water not be safe? Depends. During the cataclysms the ground is heaved and jerked, and any wells or piping will be shattered. In that the ground water is as likely to carry poisons as the surface, having filtered down from the surface, what looks like pure water from underground may be, again, a slow death. Ground water also is subject to contact with the lead heavy mantle, which most often does not make it all the way to the surface during eruptions. If one cannot trust the usual water supply, what to do? Distillation processes or recycling water known to be pure are two approaches likely to provide a steady supply of water. This may seem tedious to those so used to taking fresh, pure water for granted, but those who prepare for the times ahead will not find themselves suddenly without one of life's necessities.

Man dies without air in minutes, without water in days, and without food over weeks. Bread may be the staff of life, but water is life itself!

Note: below added during the Dec 21, 2002 Live ZetaTalk IRC Session.

Our advise on distilling water to remove heavy metals such as lead presumes that volcanic ash will be falling, be included in the rain or fog, and accumulate on the ground. There are several factors to consider. First, the land may be at a site where little rain falls, outside of the volcanic drift, high so that most heavy ash has dropped before arriving, and have little problem with this. Second, heavy rainfall may outweigh the lead content, wash this way in good runoff, such that there is scarcely any accumulation or it is so diluted as to be negligible. Third, the land may be directly in volcanic ash path, from a volcano that lasts for centuries after the shift, and be unlivable for far longer than the 25 years we have given as a guide. Thus, there is simply no general statements about when ground or rain water will be OK. One must use their judgment about such matter.

All rights reserved:

 Zeta Report on USAEBN, February 1, 2016 on YouTubeNemesis, the Sun’s dark binary twin 18.74 Sun-Pluto distances away, per the Zetas, is in the news as a discovered planetary body. But named Planet 9 instead of Nemesis and declared to be 20 Sun-Pluto distances away. The Earth’s dark twin also back in the news, as Earth 2.0. Are we being prepped for the announcement on Nibiru?  What does this have to do with the lead poisoning in Flint, Michigan? Earthquakes and volcanic dust can bring lead into our drinking water, and this will increasingly become a problem. Learn to distill your drinking water, and chelate heavy metals away via diet in Parsley, Celantro, and other vegies.

Situational Preparedness

TOPIC: Lead Poisoning

Ground water and even water from underground sources may contain Lead from volcanic dust after a pole shift. Lead in drinking water accumulates in the human body and causes damaged nerves with consequent inability to coordinate voluntary muscle movements, seizures, and bizarre behavior. Mental retardation in the young and high blood pressure in adults also result. Lead in drinking water is tasteless, but Symptoms of lead poisoning include lethargy, vomiting, abdominal pain, and constipation. Lead Intake can be reduced by Diet and Farming practices. Treatment in the Aftertime is possible. Lead Testing kits are available, and a Troubled Times TEAM has been formed to explore lead testing options. A diet high in Iron and Calcium is the cure, though medicines to purge the system, such as Live Earth, called Chelation, also exist. Epsom Salts also can remove lead from the gut. Distillation of drinking water eliminates Lead, and even filtering with Coffee Grounds is effective. A KDF Filter is inexpensive and effective.

This is an immense problem. In populated areas, sewage water will mix in, or the surface water will be contaminated with sewage simply because doing it in the bushes will be the handy toilet. Numerous human diseases are spread in this way, with cholera and dysentery topping the list, though various virus infections such as hepatitis and polio can likewise be spread via human feces, living outside the body for a time. We have stressed that heavy metals will be found in groundwater due to cracks in the ground where magma has forced up, and due to volcanic ash that has washed down with the rain. Distillation resolves all these pollutants and infectious agents and should absolutely be used.

What was done in the past? There are those in the sinking zones in Indonesia who are cooking today with muddy water, as their fresh water sources have become contaminated. This is not an issue that is merely historical, something that was done in the past, as history will repeat itself. Humans survived, during past pole shifts, primarily in regions where volcanic ash was not heavy, or where fresh water emerged from aquifers where heavy metals had settled out over the econs and infectious agents died from lack of nutrition in the aquifer. It was luck, and location, location, location that allowed those humans to survive. (Zeta question re: Lead poisoning)

This has been much discussed on the Troubled Times pages as we early on warned about the danger of lead in drinking water after the shift. This will occur not just from surface water, polluted from volcanic dust, but also well water coming in contact with magma that has risen up close to the surface. It takes many decades for lead to leach out and return to a depth where it will not create problems. In the meantime, man is best advised to distill his water. Fish will not pick up lead, though it will pick up Mercury. Many plants and animals filter out lead, some better than others, so this could be researched. Should one become sick, in spite of precautions, or because they were not informed ahead of time, eating a diet high in Vitamin C and iron will help the body eliminate lead. Research these methods, as they are means even a common man without medical attention can rely upon, after the shift.

On the ZetaTalk  (Troubled Times) website there are a variety of icons to familiarize yourself with. There you'll find the link to "SAFE WATER"

Food Food

Seeds Plant Seeds Gardens Garden Plants Permaculture Hydroponics Fertilizer Weeds Algae Low Light Vital Earth Bugs Protein Beans Grains Bread Booze Sprouts Fast Food Bones Honey Fruits Fish Chicken Lama Goat Rabbit Sheep Vitamins Amino Acid Odd Diets Poison Self Help Storage Storage Means Hunting Safe Water Find Water

Click on the icons above to go to your area of interest.

TOPIC: Safe Water

Surface water should be Treated by boiling it to rid it of germs and parasites and some Pollutants. Waterborne Diseases can be deadly, and Emergencies can occur suddenly. A Filter such as Katadyn, AquaPure, PUR Plus, Brittas, Amway, or PentaPure, or a Pre-Filter or Lead Trap can help, along with a Systematic approach to the problem. Reportedly, a Home-Made filter can be constructed. Ultraviolet as in Sunlight, Ozone, Oxygen, and Electricity also kills germs. An battery operated UV light such as SteriPEN can be constructed. Chlorine has its pros and Cons, but Standing removes it. Wine Treated water from Wooden Barrels kills bacteria. Containers for Storing Water, perhaps in Bulk, can leach. Hard Plastic and metal are best, though Soft Plastic reportedly works, but Copper can cause problems. Reverse Osmosis purifies water. Drinking Salt Water such as seawater can be extremely dangerous, as are other Bad Options, but Urine is potable. A Water Cone uses the heat from the Sun to distill water. Water polluted with Volcanic Ash or Forest Fire ash or DOE Dump Sites can be dangerous, so Distilling drinking water is advised. Distillation also removes Arsenic and Lead from ground water. A Distillation Process is a Simple Process involving Making Steam. Methods include an Open Teapot and Close Teapot and Coil Exchange and Full Exchange to reduce HydroCarbon. Another method is a Pressure Cooker with Parts List and Bucket Collection, with Steam Cautions. Non-steam methods like an Umbrella Tent or Cotton Cloth are also effective. Best method is the Stacked Pot with Two Pots and a Pie Pan with optional Small Parts and Simple Assembly. This method can be purchased from Sustainable Village, already assembled. Water Quality can also be tested. All Myths debunked, distillation can have a Vacuum Assist and use multiple Heat Sources. A Solar Distiller uses heat from sunlight. One can allow low Boiling Point pollutants such as Hydrocarbons to escape. Commercial Distillers are available, including Separators. Even the Ancients had distillers, and Seawater can be distilled using only the heat of the day. Energy efficient methods for purifying Brackish Water are available, with detailed instruction on a PDF File. A misc.survivalism ftp covers the issues but presumes a short term crisis.

Here you can find a Stainless Steel Water Distiller Design on this blog:

What Flint Activists Are Doing To Fight Lead Poisoning In Their Water

Ever since the Flint water crisis began, lead poisoning has been a top news story in national media. Most know the story of Flint’s water crisis by now. Flint was assigned an emergency manager that eliminated most democratic checks and balances in the city, including the power of the city council and mayor. The emergency manager then decided to change Flint’s water source. Changing the water source caused an erosion in the water pipes throughout the city, which in turn, caused the lead in the pipes to contaminate the water. Flint residents have been unable to drink water out of their pipes for the past two years.

Lead poisoning in Flint certainly hits young people very hard, but the entire population was poisoned.

Nearly two years after Flint starting getting its water from the Flint River, which corroded pipes and caused lead to leach into the drinking water, nobody knows exactly when the problem will be fixed.

How might Flint’s water contamination affect garden soils? Part 2

With the news of lead contamination in the City of Flint’s water supply, people who farm and garden in the city are questioning the safety of growing in soil that has been irrigated with contaminated water.

Zetas say: Plants actually filter heavy metals.

B.C. NDP says Liberals waiting for more dead fish to test lead levels at schools

By: Dirk Meissner, The Canadian Press
Posted: 02/22/2016 6:12 PM | Last Modified: 02/22/2016 7:44 PM

VICTORIA - Dead salmon eggs in a northern British Columbia classroom should raise concerns about the safety of drinking water in schools, but the government appears to be downplaying the fears of parents, says Opposition New Democrat Leader John Horgan.

Elevated levels of lead above Health Canada guidelines have been found in school water systems in Kitimat and Prince Rupert, but Health Minister Terry Lake is telling parents not to worry, Horgan said Monday.

"If I were a parent, I'd be extremely concerned," he said. "We need to be looking at a whole host of schools in the northwest, where there's some of the oldest buildings in the province. If we have troubles in one, it's quite likely we're going to have troubles in all of them."

Parents of students at four Prince Rupert schools received letters from the school district last week telling them elevated levels of lead above Health Canada guidelines were found in the school water. The school district responded by installing filters on water fountains and flushing the water system each morning.

North Coast New Democrat Jennifer Rice, who represents Prince Rupert and surrounding communities, said she's received calls from parents who fear their children are at risk of lead poisoning from drinking water at school.

She said she's also heard from pregnant women with concerns about drinking water in their homes.

Horgan and Rice said the health of school drinking water is not a new issue in the northwest.

Four years ago in nearby Kitimat, a concerned teacher prompted water testing at local schools after a classroom experiment to raise salmon eggs in an aquarium ended in repeated failures. The tests found the eggs were killed by elevated levels of copper and lead in the water.

A district-wide investigation then found varied levels of lead and copper in drinking water in other Kitimat schools, but the water in Prince Rupert schools was not tested until late last year.

"The government shouldn't be turning a blind eye and waiting for fish to die in a science experiment," Horgan said.

Lake said he is meeting with Education Minister Mike Bernier to examine the water quality issue.

Blood tests taken from children in the north between 2009 and 2011 indicated no series health issues connected to the water issue, said Lake

Vindicator tests residential water at 36 Warren homes, revealing one at unsafe level, reassuring others - See more at:

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Comment by Starr DiGiacomo on November 12, 2018 at 6:24am

Lead poisoning: Water supply to most Chicago houses contaminated

Lead was found in nearly 70 percent of the water samples collected by a leading local newspaper

Pipes in some cities across the United States are so old that they are leaching out lead into water systems.
The Chicago Tribune has found 70 percent of houses in Chicago had lead in tap water. In three out of the 10 samples, lead levels exceeded five parts per billion, the maximum level the US Food and Drug Administration allows in bottled water.

Comment by Starr DiGiacomo on July 31, 2018 at 7:39am

State of emergency in Michigan county as tested water is 20 times the safe level for PFAS chemicals

Comment by Starr DiGiacomo on November 14, 2017 at 5:10pm

Some Brooklyn Children Have Blood Lead Levels Higher Than Kids in Flint

New York City is among the nation’s leaders in reducing children’s exposure to lead poisoning. But in a new analysis of recently released blood tests, Reuters found that children in many city neighborhoods have dangerously high blood lead levels — some as high or higher than those of kids in Flint, Michigan.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's most recent data, 5,400 children tested above the threshold for elevated blood lead readings. The worst cases cluster in Brooklyn, but dangerously high blood lead levels were also found in Washington Heights, Harlem and Queens.

"Small children ages one to three typically are at greatest risk," Reuters reporter Joshua Schneyer told WNYC. "Many children in this age group still have hand-to-mouth behaviors, they're crawling around, they're gnawing at things. And this can be risky if they live or spend time in older housing."

The highest rate was found in South Williamsburg, in the tight-knit, ultra-orthodox Jewish Satmar community. Several factors contribute: Old housing, built long before the city's 1960 lead paint ban, now has peeling paint. Poverty rates are high. And many residents speak Yiddish as a first language, which can make it more difficult for city health workers to do outreach. 

The Reuters investigation found that housing inspections, which were supposed to get a handle on lead paint exposure in city housing, haven’t necessarily been effective. NYC Local Law 1 passed 10 years ago to protect tenants, but two key provisions of it have never been enforced. For instance, the law requires landlords to do annual spot inspections for lead hazards in all housing units with small children. But the Housing Department has never issued a single violation or fine for noncompliance.

Schneyer spoke with WNYC's Richard Hake about this recent report, which includes a detailed map of affected areas

Comment by Starr DiGiacomo on February 8, 2017 at 11:47pm

Elevated lead levels found in bloodstream of 6k California workers – report

Increased lead levels have been found in the blood of more than 6,000 construction and manufacturing workers in California, a new report says. Such increases can lead to problems such as kidney disease and hypertension.

The report by the California Department of Health’s Occupational Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, contains the results of blood tests conducted on 38,440 workers between the years of 2012 and 2014.

Of the workers tested, 6,051 were found to have elevated levels of lead in their bloodstream, which is defined as five micrograms or more per deciliter (about 3.3 ounces) of blood.

Most of those found to have elevated levels of lead in their system were men between the ages of 20 and 59, and had Hispanic surnames. Many lived in Southern California, particularly in Los Angeles, Riverside, and San Bernardino counties.

A total of 14,002 workers had two or more blood lead level (BLL) tests, of which 2,782 (20 percent) were found to have elevated lead levels multiple times. Such chronic exposure increases the risk for health effects including hypertension, kidney disease, cognitive dysfunction, and adverse reproductive outcomes, according to the report.

The findings came as no surprise to Doug Parker, executive director of Worksafe, an employee health and safety advocacy organization based in Oakland.

“It doesn’t surprise me. This is a huge problem,” Parker said, as quoted by Los Angeles Daily News. “Clearly, there haven’t been adequate actions taken” by some employers, he added.

Sixty percent of the workers with blood lead levels at or above 10 micrograms per deciliter work in the manufacturing sector – primarily industries which make batteries, aircraft, aircraft parts, plumbing fixtures, or metal valves – build or repair ships, or recover lead from scrap.

Those with levels at or above 40 micrograms per deciliter were reported to work in industries which handle lead containing bullets and firearms, such as shooting ranges, ammunition manufacturing, gun repair, and firearm instruction, or in metal-related and construction industries.

California’s state government requires employers to provide BLL tests for workers if their jobs require them to use or “disturb” lead, and to take steps to minimize lead dust and fumes.

However, the report warned that many other industries do not test their employees, even if they are likely to come into regular contact with lead.

As such, the document warns that “data presented in this report [does] not fully describe the magnitude and distribution of elevated BLLs among California workers.”

It goes on to state that existing Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) standards, which dictate what is considered an acceptable amount of lead in the blood are based on medical and scientific information which is over 35 years old.

“There is now convincing evidence that chronic, low-level lead exposure causes harmful health effects,” the report states.

In conclusion, the researchers recommended that Cal/OSHA lower the BLL at which workers must be removed from lead exposure, and increases the required frequency of BLL testing. They also suggest that BLL testing be required for all workplaces where lead is used or distributed, regardless of air lead levels, and that the permissible exposure limit be lowered.

The report notes that Cal/OSHA has “taken steps toward revising its two lead standards,” and that researchers “expect that fewer workers would experience adverse health effects from lead exposure” if revised standards are implemented.

Source : RT – Daily news

and another:

Elevated Levels Of Lead Found In Water Samples At Roosevelt Island's PS/IS 217

A majority of the afflicted Flint homes in last year’s disaster had lead levels around 27 ppb.

Data from the Department of Education revealed that some of the nondrinking water samples, at a Roosevelt Island school last month, contained lead levels higher than those found in the Flint, Michigan calamity. The Environmental Protection Agency dictates that water with lead concentration in excess of 15 parts per billion must be addressed by city officials. Eight of the 100 water samples collected at the NYC school last month contained unacceptably high levels of lead, ranging from 16.5 ppb in the locker room to a whopping 3,430 ppb in one weight-room tap. 

As a comparison, a majority of the afflicted Flint homes in last year’s disaster had lead levels around 27 ppb. A spokeswoman for the DOE emphasized that the problematic school water samples were not from drinking fountains or taps used for cooking. The school’s drinking fountains were said to be safe. There have been no reports of sickness at the school and there has never been a case of lead poisoning recorded at a NYC school. Officials resented any comparison to Flint’s predicament, as Flint’s water pollution was due to systemic breakdowns in treatment.

As reported by the NY Post, the eight taps were removed from PS/IS 217 after the registered lead levels automatically prompted remediation. Deputy Chancellor Elizabeth Rose assured parents, in a letter dated January 25, that those faucets will remain detached until the water is completely safe. DOE spokeswoman Toya Holness stated, “Parents can rest assured that water in New York City is of the highest quality in the world and we have stringent protocols and robust procedures in place to ensure that water in school buildings is safe. This is standard protocol, and there is no reason for alarm. We are continuing to provide students and staff with safe drinking water.”

and another:

Pennsylvania school district sued over lead levels in water

Updated: February 8, 2017 — 12:03 PM EST

The Associated Press

PITTSBURGH (AP) - A western Pennsylvania school district where high levels of lead in an elementary school's water went unresolved for months faces a federal lawsuit.

The school, Summit Elementary, was closed for two days in January after Butler School District Superintendent Dale Lumley said he learned the problem hadn't been rectified since it was detected in August.

The school has since been closed indefinitely for unrelated problems with E. coli in the wells from which the school's water is drawn, and its students began classes Monday in another previously shuttered building.

Lumley resigned Sunday, the district announced, and has yet to comment on his decision. His attorney, and one for the district, didn't immediately return calls for comment Wednesday. Those attorneys declined comment Tuesday when Pittsburgh media outlets contacted them after the lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court.

Attorneys for Jennifer Tait and her daughter, Jillian, who attended Summit Elementary, are hoping a federal judge in Pittsburgh will grant class-action status in their case, which would let other students exposed to lead in the water join the lawsuit.

Brendan Lupetin, one of the attorneys for the Taits, told The Associated Press on Wednesday that the district's response to the lead issue has been insufficient. The district has offered to pay each student to be tested once for lead in their bloodstreams.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, lead levels of 5 micrograms in a deciliter, or one-tenth of a liter of blood, is considered elevated and unsafe for children.

Jillian Tate's blood showed 3 micrograms of lead, Lupetin said, adding, "In the medical literature, any lead levels in a child's blood is not good."

The lawsuit seeks unspecified monetary damages and wants a judge to order the district to pay for future periodic lead testing for Summit students. The district should also be forced to create a contingency fund to pay for future medical expenses, should any students eventually develop health problems linked to lead in the school's water, Lupetin said.

"Lead poisoning in kids is real scary stuff," Lupetin said. "It usually always causes some kind of compromise of the central nervous system" and can lead to behavioral and learning disabilities.

The lawsuit also seeks punitive damages, which Lupetin said can be imposed if a jury finds "reckless conduct" by the district or a "state-created" danger.

Lumley has said he was aware of the August tests, but was advised by a maintenance worker put in charge of monitoring the water that the lead problem was resolved by September. It turns out it wasn't, though it's not clear when Lumley learned that before it was revealed to angry parents at a school board meeting Jan. 23.

Comment by Starr DiGiacomo on December 28, 2016 at 1:41am

BREAKING: Top U.S. Scientist Resigns & Announces GOP Water Poison Cover-Up Scandal

The decision to leave didn’t come lightly. After calling out the biggest utility in the state and Republican Governor Pat McCrory, she gave up her job of nearly seven years and an annual salary of $188,000.

In 2014 a Duke Energy power plant had a spill that resulted in 40,000 tons of toxic coal ash and 27 million gallons of wastewater spilling over into the Dan River. The ash, a byproduct of burning coal, is harmful to human beings and the environment. It contains extremely toxic amounts of chemicals like mercury, arsenic, and silica.

After the spill happened, many people in communities all over the state were concerned about Duke Energy’s 32 coal ash storage facilities. Several facilities were found to be unsafe, uncovered, and sitting in basins that were unlined. Basically, giant pits of coal ash, just sitting there and leaching toxins into the water table.

Shortly after the storage facilities were discovered to be unsafe, households around the storage sites were warned by state officials not to drink the water from their wells, due to water quality concerns. Duke Energy started providing citizens affected with bottled water in April of 2015.

A year after residents were told that their well water wasn’t safe to drink, state officials from the Department of Environmental Quality and the Department of Health and Human Services contacted those who had been impacted by the issue and told them their water was safe.

Unfortunately, testing showed that the well water near the ash dumping sites was still unsafe, and contained high levels of cancer causing toxins. The only reason the “do-not-drink” order was lifted was because Duke Energy lobbied the state to reverse it, despite the fact that nothing had changed. There were still unlined coal ash sites littering the state and they were still leaching toxins into the water and the environment.

Governor Pat McCrory actually worked for Duke Energy for 30 years prior to becoming the governor and didn’t listen when many state employees disagreed with reversing the “do-not-drink” order. One of those state employees was Ken Rudo, toxicologist for the Department of Health and Human Services. Rudo expressed that he believed the only reason the “do-not-drink” order was lifted is because of Duke Energy’s connection to the government. Rudo also removed his name from the letter DHHS sent out to residents claiming the water was safe to drink.

The Associated Pressed managed to obtain a copy of a deposition that was given last July by Ken Rudo as a part of a lawsuit that was filed against Duke Energy by several conservation groups, including the Sierra Club. Duke Energy company was unsuccessful when it tried to get the documents from the case sealed, but during court Rudo accused his boss, state public health director Randall Williams of lying to the residents of North Carolina affected by the shoddy coal ash dumps.

‘The state health director’s job is to protect public health. And in this specific instance, the opposite occurred. He knowingly told people that their water was safe when we knew it wasn’t.’

Naturally, when the story broke, Williams was angry and desperate to save face. Williams and Tom Reeder, a rep from the Department of Environmental Quality, published an open letter in an attempt to portray Rudo in a negative light, saying he didn’t understand water toxicology. Thankfully though, Rudo wasn’t alone in his fight and Megan Davies, the state’s chief epidemiologist, resigned her position in protest.

In her resignation letter Davies said:

‘The editorial signed by Randall Williams and Tom Reeder presents a false narrative of a lone scientist in acting independently to set health screening levels and make water use recommendations to well owners.’

She also said that she resigning her position was a huge loss.

‘I cannot work for a Department and an Administration that deliberately misleads the public.’

The residents that live near the coal ash dumping sites are still sitting ducks, not sure if they should listen to the scientists or the state officials, who still insist that the water is fine despite the high level of cancer causing chemicals present. Duke Energy insists that despite the fact that they’re still delivering bottled water to the affected households they’re just doing it to be nice, it has nothing to do with the well water being toxic.

Comment by Starr DiGiacomo on August 19, 2016 at 6:06am

AUGUST 18, 2016 4:24 PM

Cancer-causing chemicals will go nicely with toxic algae, flesh-eating bacteria

Such auspicious timing. Rick’s gang at the state Environmental Regulations Commission could hardly have picked a more gruesome year to loosen restrictions on toxic chemicals

dumped into Florida’s waterways.
A deluge of benzene, beryllium, trichloroethane, dichloroethylene and other known 
carcinogens ought to blend nicely with the stinking layers of Day-Glo green algae that has
been sliming the St. Lucie River and threatening the Caloosahatchee River. Or with the
massive fish kills along the Banana River, Sykes Creek, the Indian River and the Mosquito Lagoon

The new hazard-chemical rules complement the fertilizer runoff and industrial pollution plaguing the St. Johns River and the black foaming paper-mill effluent that environmentalists claim has left a 10-square mile dead zone at the mouth of the Fenholloway River. And, of course, with the blessing of the ERC, agricultural and industrial and municipal waste pollution will continue to make its wretched way down upon Suwannee River. Sadly, I roam.

The ERC, which voted last month to allow polluters to flush higher levels of 23 toxic chemicals (including 18 known carcinogens) into rivers, streams and canals, must assume that Florida waterways have become so adulterated that no one much cares about a couple of dozen more hazardous pollutants. Not in a state that frequently warns swimmers away from waters with high levels of enteric bacteria, attributable to fecal contamination.

We’ve got dead manatees floating in the toxic algae scum on the Indian River Lagoon. We’ve got radioactive isotopes showing up in Biscayne Bay near the Turkey Point nuclear plant.

We’ve got 450 tons of phosphorus a year flowing into Lake Okeechobee from farms, ranches, citrus groves and the Orlando suburbs. And, boosted by global warming, vibrio vulnificus, AKA “flesh-eating bacteria,” menaces swimmers in brackish coastal waters, especially when fresh-water releases (like from Lake Okeechobee), mess up the salt-water

ratio. The bacterial infections killed 14 Floridians in 2015 and 5 so far in 2016.

The ERC voted 3-2 on July 26 to adopt new standards that include rules for 39 chemicals that had not been previously regulated. But the board, despite outraged public opposition, simultaneously loosened regs on the long list of other industrial chemicals.

Clearly, the ERC was serving the wants of certain special interests. “It seems to me that the chemicals whose water quality standards were lowered are those chemicals most likely to be violated by paper mills, sugar production, and fracking operations,” Randall Denker ofWaters Without Borders, a Tallahassee law firm devoted to water issues, told me via email.


State Sen. Miguel Diaz de la Portilla

Denker pointed out that Gov. Rick Scott ensured the 3-2 vote by failing to fill two vacancies on the ERC, one designated for a representative of the environmental community and another looking out for local governments. Denker suspects that the commission majority was in a rush to adopt the new rules to accommodate a paper mill on the Fenholloway River. Or perhaps the ERC wanted to accommodate the governor’s buddies in the state’s oil and gas industry.

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson and eight Democratic U.S. House members signed a letter protesting that the new chemical standards fail to “preserve the health and safety of all users, especially vulnerable populations like children, the elderly, and people whose livelihoods rely on the water, such as commercial fishermen.”

Republican state Sen. Miguel Diaz de la Portilla of Miami released his own angry statement: “I cannot understand how allowing for the increase of not one but multiple known cancer-causing agents in our waterways throughout the state makes any logical sense.”

By Thursday afternoon, 31,923 names had been added to a petition demanding that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency block Florida’s new water standards.

The Seminole Tribe filed a petition with the Florida Division of Administrative Hearings objecting that the regulations “adversely affect” tribal members “who continue to exercise their customary and traditional hunting, fishing, trapping and frogging rights on millions of acres of lands and waters across South and Central Florida.” But on Monday, according to the Tallahassee Democrat, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection respondedthat the Seminoles’ objections, filed on Aug. 5, had just missed the 5 p.m. deadline.

Because the ERC majority sure as hell wants to avoid another hearing. It would be just too tedious trying to explain to us, the ignorant public, that Florida’s waterways are already such a toxic mess, upping the dose of 23 hazardous chemicals hardly matters.

Comment by Starr DiGiacomo on April 7, 2016 at 9:12pm

New York City Apartments Show High Levels Of Lead And Are Poisoning Children

You hear scary things about New York City apartments all the time. Many are rat-infested, many beds have bed bugs; the list goes on. Even more frightening than issues like these is the problem of lead paint in New York apartments that is causing lead poisoning. Landlords are not spending the money to have lead paint removed, and it is having a serious impact on New York residents.

Zaimah Abdul-Majeed was alarmed when she got a call from her daughter Zoe’s pediatrician saying that her lead level was very high. As psychologist Vicki Sudhalter explains, “Lead is a toxin, it’s a poison. It destroys brain cells…no amount is okay for your child.” Zaimah took her daugher to the hospital, and the Department of Health got involved too. “They came and they inspected everything and found about 11 counts of lead in my house. Pretty much the doors and doorways all had lead,” said Zaimah.

Dan Woodard, an attorney for Zaimah, said that for landlords, it’s all about saving money, rather than meeting safety standards. “[Landlords] are not doing what they are supposed to do, which is maintaining the paint in these apartments. [They are] allowing children to be continually exposed,” he said. Zaimah noticed that Zoe was having developmental problems. She did not start speaking at the age she was supposed to, among other developmental delays. It turns out that this is linked to lead paint. “That it still happens is so completely and utterly frustrating,” said Dr. Sudhalter. “It is a preventable cause of all of these different disabilities and we haven’t prevented it.”

The bottom line is New York landlords need to pay the money to have lead paint removed from their apartments before they rent them out. If they do not, children will continue to be harmed. We hope that this video has raised some awareness about this incredibly impactful problem.

and another article:

Thursday, April 07, 2016Last Update: 10:54 AM PT

Experts Sound Off on Water-Safety Failures

WASHINGTON (CN) - Experts warn that utilities across the country have failed to heed federal guidelines urging discontinuation of a practice that disguises high lead levels in water.
     The practice in question occurs during sampling of water under the Environmental Protection Agency's lead and copper rule.
     Though common in years past, the EPA now warns against running the tap for several minutes before the pre-sampling, six-hour stagnation period.
     Flint's lead-in-water crisis exposed the dangers of the practice, known as pre-flushing, but the current lead and copper rule does not prohibit the practice.
     Just this past January, the Washington-based advocacy group Parents for Non-Toxic Alternatives blasted Philadelphia for still advising customers pre-flush before collecting samples for testing.
     The group is among several water-safety advocates voicing concerns that utilities underestimate lead levels in drinking water. Practices these groups have touted for years are only now making their into EPA advisories.
     Guidelines the EPA issued in February, for example, now suggest using wide-mouthed sampling bottles to capture stronger flows more representative of how people use water in their homes. The guidelines also now recommend that water utilities stop instructing customers to remove the screens on faucet tips.
     But the sampling protocol is still deficient in other ways, medical ethnographer Yanna Lambrinidou said in an interview.
     The president of the nontoxic alternatives group, Lambrinidou says the lead and copper rule requires the taking of only one water sample after the six-hour stagnation period.
     Though that first sample catches only the water closest to the tap, Lambrinidou said researchers should be testing water that had prolonged contact with lead service lines - the water that people use to drink and cook with every day.
     Multiple samples collected 45 seconds after the first would capture water that sat in the lead service line during the stagnation period, which could contain higher lead levels.
     Even two samples might not be enough to capture peak lead levels, Lambrinidou added, but it would be better than current practice.
     The ethnographer cited research showing that 50 percent to 70 percent of water utility companies with lead service lines would exceed the EPA's threshold for lead.
     "This finding could affect up to 96 million residents in this country who are being told their water is safe to drink," Lambrinidou said in an interview.
     Lambrinidou noted that lead-certified water filters would help protect individual homes, but these can be pricey and inaccessible for low-income families.
     "The most vulnerable communities will be hardest hit," Lambrinidou said.
     Partial Lead-Pipe Replacement, a Partial Solution
     The lead and copper rule allows water utilities to conduct only partial replacements of lead service lines, a rule that lets utilities focus on the public portion of lead pipes while privately owned property goes unchecked.
     Concerns about how EPA determined control of, and thus responsibility for, water service lines put the rule in place. A group called the American Water Works Association won that 1993 challenge, but the court left open the question of responsibility.
     Combined with years of lobbying by the water industry, the ruling led the EPA to condone partial replacements.
     George Hawkins, the CEO and general manager of the D.C. Water and Sewer Authority, blamed partial replacements for causing temporary spikes in lead levels, putting public health at risk.
     A 2010 study in Environmental Health Perspectives, the research journal published with support from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, supports Hawkins' assertion that partial replacements do not reduce lead levels in the long run.
     Though D.C. Water still does partial replacements of lead service lines when it replaces water mains, Hawkins said that the authority also tries to persuade home owners to replace the private side of the infrastructure at the same time, with an approximate 40 percent success rate.
     D.C. Water provides public notice when it replaces a water main, offers lead-certified filters to residents and conducts lead monitoring, Hawkins said. But the cost for home owners to replace the privately owned portion of the pipes can be prohibitive, he noted.
     It costs about $100 per foot to replace pipes in private homes, Hawkins said, estimating a median total cost of $2,500, a figure well beyond the reach of low- or fixed-income families.
     The Bigger Picture
     Grading it at a D-plus in 2013, the American Society for Civil Engineers said U.S. water infrastructure was "nearing the end of its useful life."
     With the American Water Works Association estimating 6.1 million lead service lines in 11,200 community water systems across, experts say a national project is needed to replace them.
     Jeffrey Griffiths, professor of public health and community medicine at Tufts University, said the cost of replacing these pipes will be far less than dealing with the public health costs of lead poisoning, but the worry of higher taxes makes Americans reluctant.
     "If people they think they're getting OK water, they don't care about maintaining the infrastructure for other people," he said in an interview.
     Lambrinidou said the EPA should close loopholes in its lead and copper rule before the focus turns to fully replacing lead service lines.
     "Common sense tells me that first we need to secure the integrity of the rule," she said.
     The EPA is considering changes to the lead and copper rule, and will consider recommendations from the National Drinking Water Advisory Council and other concerned citizens groups, a representative for the agency said in an email.
     Lambrinidou participated in the council, but wrote a strong statement of dissent to some of its conclusions.
     The council does recommend eventual full replacement of lead service lines, which Lambrinidou says she supports, but she criticized a provision that would still allow partial replacements.
     Lambrinidou said the council's other recommendations would also let water utilities indefinitely delay replacement - possibly for decades.
     Unless the EPA revises the current rule and closes its loopholes, consumers will have less protection from lead exposure, Lambrinidou's dissent argues.
     A representative for the EPA said the agency's revision process will include careful evaluation of all the recommendations it receives from stakeholders, including the council.
     "During evaluation that could mean we take some recommendations and not others," the EPA said in an email.
     Griffiths said the stakes are high since lead exposure carries serious health risks, including stunted intellectual development.
     "Our biggest obstacle to fixing the lead problem in the U.S. is the lack of political will," Griffiths said. "It is not a political issue; it is a public health issue."
     D.C. Water's Hawkins agreed that "this ought to be one that cuts across political parties."
     "We all want to make sure that children have safe drinking water when they get up in the morning," Hawkins added.
     Any national project would need to include a plan and funding for replacing lead pipes in privately owned homes, Hawkins said.
     "Once you fix it, you fix it for all future generations."

Comment by Starr DiGiacomo on March 15, 2016 at 9:33pm

17,000 Newark children to be tested for lead poisoning

Water bottles being delivered from the Community Food Bank of New Jersey's warehouse. (Courtesy CFBNJ)

Comment by Starr DiGiacomo on March 11, 2016 at 6:58am

Military to check for water contamination at 664 sites

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The military plans to examine hundreds of sites nationwide to determine whether chemicals from foam used to fight fires have contaminated groundwater and spread to drinking water, the Defense Department said.

The checks are planned for 664 sites where the military has conducted fire or crash training, military officials told The Associated Press this week.

Since December, tests have been carried out at 28 naval sites in mostly coastal areas. Drinking water at a landing field in Virginia and the groundwater at another site in New Jersey have been found to contain levels above the guidance given by the federal Environmental Protection Agency, the Navy said. Results of the other tests have either come up under federally acceptable levels or are pending.

The Navy is giving bottled water to its personnel at the Naval Auxiliary Landing Field Fentress in Chesapeake, Virginia, and is testing wells in a nearby rural area after the discovery of perfluorinated chemicals in drinking water, which the federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry says may be associated with prostate, kidney and testicular cancer, along with other health issues.

The Navy found perfluorinated chemicals in the groundwater monitoring wells at Naval Weapons Station Earle in Colts Neck, New Jersey, but not in the drinking water supply. Test results from off-base drinking water wells are expected this month.

And several congressmen are raising concerns about the safety of drinking water near two former Navy bases in suburban Philadelphia. The lawmakers say firefighting foams might be the source of chemicals found in nearly 100 public and private wells near the Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base Willow Grove and the Naval Air Warfare Center in Warminster.

The foam is used where potentially catastrophic fuel fires can occur, such as in a plane crash, because it can rapidly extinguish them. It contains perfluorooctane sulfonate and perfluorooctanoic acid, or PFOS and PFOA, both considered emerging contaminants by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The Defense Department said that until foam without perfluorinated chemicals can be certified for military use, it is removing stocks of it in some places and also trying to prevent any uncontrolled releases during training exercises.

The military is beginning to assess the risk to groundwater at the training sites not only to determine the extent of contamination, but also to identify any action the Defense Department needs to take, said Lt. Col. Eric D. Badger, a department spokesman.

California has the most sites, with 85, followed by Texas, with 57, Florida, with 38, and Alaska and South Carolina, each with 26, according to a list provided to the AP. Each state has at least one site.

Knowledge about the chemicals' effects has been evolving, and the EPA does not regulate them. The agency in 2009 issued guidance on the level at which they are considered harmful to health, but it was only an advisory — not a standard that could be legally enforced.

The EPA said then that it was assessing the potential risk from short-term exposure through drinking water. It later began studying the health effects from a lifetime of exposure. Those studies remain in progress.

The Navy started handing out bottled water in January to about 50 people at the contaminated Virginia site, and it worked with the city to set up a water station for concerned property owners after it found perfluorinated chemicals in on-base drinking water wells above the concentrations in the EPA advisory.

The Navy is testing private wells of nearby property owners; those results are due next week.

Chris Evans, of the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, credited the Navy with being proactive but said he's concerned anytime there's a potential threat to human health and the environment.

Some states have established their own drinking water and groundwater guidelines for the maximum allowable concentrations of the chemicals; Virginia uses the EPA's.

"We'll follow EPA's lead as this develops," Evans said.

There's a lot of evolving science around perfluorinated chemicals, said Lawrence Hajna, a spokesman for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.

"The more that we hear, the more that we realize that this is a very important health concern," he said.

Comment by Scott on March 10, 2016 at 3:10am

Lead Fear Forces Water Ban in 30 New Jersey School Buildings (3/9/16)

Elevated levels of lead caused officials in New Jersey's largest school district [Newark] on Wednesday to shut off water fountains at 30 school buildings until more tests are conducted, but officials said they don't believe the contamination poses any serious health risks.

...Notices were posted and bottled water and water coolers were delivered to the school buildings in Newark.

...Parents should have no concerns about their children's water and food consumption at school, the DEP [Department of Environmental Protection] said, because drinking water alone is not typically associated with elevated blood lead levels. The DEP said that the buildup of lead from all sources over time determines whether harmful effects will occur.

..."New Jersey cities have old outdated pipes in our streets and homes which can mean even higher levels of lead in our water. Many of our water systems go back to the Victorian era and even homes built in the 30's and 40's have pipes made with lead solder," said director Jeff Tittel.

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