Recently we talked about nitrate, nitrites, phosphates, bacteria and other such compounds making their way into rivers, streams and aquifers as runoff from fertilized fields. This time we bring news that the US Environmental Protection Agency has put a commonly used weed killer known as ‘atrazine‘ under the microscope.
Date Published: Thursday, October 8th, 2009
Yesterday, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that it is re-evaluating health outcomes linked to a commonly used pesticide, atrazine, that has been discovered in drinking water, said the Associated Press (AP). Atrazine is typically used on corn and other crops.
The AP noted that, based on research, rainstorm runoff can contaminate streams and rivers, contaminated water systems. The EPA looked at 150 drinking water systems in America’s Midwest because that is where the chemical is used most frequently, said the AP. The EPA has not detected atrazine at the levels that would prompt adverse health problems, such as cancer; however, emerging studies indicate that even at lower levels, atrazine’s presence in drinking water can result in “low birth weights, birth defects and reproductive problems,” said the AP. ( source )
Can the average person test for atrazine in drinking water? Yes, but anyone with serious reason to suspect drinking water contamination should have their water tested by a certified water testing laboratory such as Suburban Water Labs.
Do-it-yourself test kits like the Quick Pesticide in Water Test Kit work well as screening tools but do not provide the ‘last word’ when it comes to drinking water safety.