Many groundwater sources in Utah contain dangerously high levels of Arsenic.
Arsenic in Utah
Arsenic is a naturally occurring element that can be found in groundwater. It gets into water through erosion and the dissolving of rocks and minerals. Humans have also introduced arsenic to water from urban runoff, pesticides, fossil fuel combustion, treated wood and smelting and mining wastes. Arsenic can also get into water from municipal and industrial waste sites.
Long term Arsenic exposure can lead to cancer in humans. It is a known carcinogen. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) has set a maximum contaminant level (MCL) for arsenic in public water supplies at 10 micrograms per liter (µg/L), down from the previous limit of 50 µg/L. Medical research indicated that there is really no safe level of Arsenic and that we should strive to remove it completely from the water that we drink.
Drought conditions and rampant population growth have resulted in higher Arsenic levels in Utah County, particularly in Lake Shore, Benjamin, West Mountain, Genola, Spring Lake, Elberta, and surrounding areas.
Arsenic exposure can pose significant health risks. Here are some of the potential effects that we currently know about:
- Cancer: Long-term exposure to arsenic is associated with an increased risk of skin, lung, bladder, and kidney cancers. It is classified as a Human Carcinogen by organizations such as the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC).
- Cardiovascular Issues: Arsenic exposure has been linked to heart disease, including hypertension, atherosclerosis, and heart attacks. It can also affect blood vessels and lead to circulatory problems.
- Skin Changes: Chronic exposure to arsenic may cause skin changes such as hyperpigmentation, hyperkeratosis, and the development of corns and warts. These skin manifestations are often seen in areas with high arsenic levels in drinking water.
- Neurological Effects: Some studies suggest that arsenic exposure may contribute to neurological disorders, including cognitive decline, memory impairment, and developmental delays in children.
- Respiratory Issues: Inhaling arsenic-containing dust or fumes can lead to respiratory irritation, bronchitis, and pulmonary diseases.
- Gastrointestinal Problems: Acute exposure to high levels of arsenic can cause nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and diarrhea. Chronic exposure may lead to gastrointestinal cancers.
- Kidney Damage: Arsenic can harm the kidneys, affecting their function and potentially leading to kidney disease.
- Reproductive and Developmental Effects: Arsenic exposure during pregnancy may impact fetal development and increase the risk of birth defects and premature births.
- Immune System Suppression: Prolonged exposure to arsenic can weaken the immune system, making individuals more susceptible to infections and diseases.
- Other Health Issues: Arsenic toxicity can also affect other organs, including the liver, lungs, and nervous system.
Removing arsenic from water is crucial to ensure safe drinking water.
We offer field-proven technologies that can effectively address Arsenic as part of your comprehensive household water quality management system:
Crusader Reverse Osmosis (RO) Systems: RO systems use a semi-permeable membrane to filter out contaminants, including arsenic. We offer all sizes and speeds, from undercounter to whole house; all designed to be as energy and water-efficient as possible.
Crusader Arsenic Removal Systems: Our engineered systems are designed to work in single-tank or lead/lag configurations. Our systems use NSF/ANSI Standard 61 Certified Media and can be designed to meet all flow rates and family sizes. We also have NSF/ANSI Standard 53 Certified Cartridges that can address Arsenic for your entire home.
When you are building or buying a home that is not on a Municipal Supply, part of the process requires testing your water for safety.
In Utah County, you will be required to at least meet Federal MCL (Maximum Contaminant Level) standards to protect the health and safety of you, your family, and your guests:
· Fluoride and Nitrate
· Total Dissolved Solids (TDS)
· Barium and Chromium
· Cadmium and Lead
· Selenium and Mercury
· Total Coliforms (E.Coli and Fecal Coliform) Click here to access Utah County Health Department’s website for the latest compliance information.
If your water test fails these minimum standards, the County will require you to have an approved Water Treatment System with Maintenance Agreement in place before you are allowed to occupy the home.
Our in-house Master Water Specialists have decades of experience in designing, installing, and maintaining water treatment systems in Utah and around the world.
We can help you with affordable and reliable treatment systems maintained by our local expert service team to ensure that your water is clean, safe, and delicious!
Obviously, Arsenic is not just a Utah County problem, we can treat Arsenic issues along with anything else in the water throughout the Great State of Utah.
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