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EWG Publishes New Paper on Carcinogens in Drinking Water

The journal, Heliyon, recently published a paper by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) on the cumulative risks from carcinogens in drinking water. Based on analysis of 2010-2017 data from 48,363 community water systems, EWG estimated that over 100,000 lifetime cancer cases could be due to 22 carcinogens in drinking water. The majority of this risk comes from arsenic, disinfection by-products (DBPs) and radionuclides.

In its analysis of the 22 carcinogens, EWG used only four risk levels (one in a million lifetime cancer risk) from EPA’s Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS).  The other 18 risk levels used in the analysis were from the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA). OEHHA uses its own risk assessment methodology for calculating risk levels for state-level actions.