Drinking Water in Fayetteville, North Carolina Tainted With Carcinogen

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Drinking Water in Fayetteville, North Carolina Tainted With Carcinogen


Studies have found that tap water in Fayetteville, North Carolina is contaminated with carcinogens. Carcinogens are the substances that cause cancer when a human is exposed to them. Tests on the tap water detected a high amount of carcinogen called 1,4-dioxane or simply called dioxane.

In 2013, EPA released a list of the acceptable amount of carcinogens in tap/drinking water. But the water provided by PWC (Public Work Commission), which was drawn from the Cape Fear River, surpassed these limits. However, the drinking water provided by PWC was clear of any carcinogens. It was discovered that the GenX chemicals found in the Cape Fear River are from Chemours Plant.

EPA ordered municipal water systems to detect any harmful industrial chemicals in the water and purify it before supplying it for human use. 1,4-dioxane is a strong carcinogen (Find out more about dioxane side effects here); as little as 3.5 ppb of the chemical is enough to cause cancer in humans.

Studies conducted on Fayetteville tap water indicated that the percentage of 1,4-dioxane in the water was insanely higher than the amount listed by EPA. In fact, the presence of dioxane in the tap water was 1200% more than the safe amount. This brought huge concerns to authorities regarding the safety of the citizens .

Lack of required technology

According to Kemp Burdette, an Environmentalist, the municipal water system doesn’t possess the advanced technology required to remove industry grade chemicals from the water. On the bright side, the presence of dioxane  considerably decreased in 2017 compared to 2013. In 2013, water in the Cape Fear River was detected with 1,033 ppb of dioxane.

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