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Bloomington, Indiana Water Quality Report

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Sources Of Drinking Water in Bloomington, Indiana

Where does Bloomington get its water from? The source of the City of Bloomington’s drinking water is surface water from Monroe Reservoir, located nine miles southeast of Bloomington. The City of Bloomington has received a copy of the Indiana-Monroe Reservoir Source Water Assessment. Federal guidelines require the State of Indiana to issue Source Water Assessments in order to identify significant or possible sources of contamination. Information concerning Monroe Reservoir’s Source Water Assessment is available by contacting the City of Bloomington’s Water Quality Office. CBU participates in EPA’s Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule. Contact the Water Quality Office for more information or copies of results related to this testing program. 

The sources of drinking water (both tap and bottled water) include rivers, lakes, streams, ponds, reservoirs, springs and wells. As water travels over the surface of the land or through the ground, it dissolves naturally occurring minerals and, in some cases, radioactive material, and can pick up substances resulting from the presence of animals or human activity. Contaminants that may be present in source water include: 

-Microbial contaminants, such as viruses and bacteria, may come from sewage treatment plants, septic systems, agricultural livestock operations, and wildlife. 

-Inorganic contaminants, such as salts and metals, can be naturally occurring or result from urban stormwater runoff, industrial or domestic waste water discharges, oil and gas production, mining, or farming. 

-Pesticides and herbicides, which may come from a variety of sources such as agriculture, urban stormwater runoff, and residential uses. 

-Organic chemical contaminants, include synthetic and volatile organic chemicals, that are byproducts of industrial processes and petroleum production, and can come from gas stations, urban stormwater runoff, and septic systems. 

-Radioactive contaminants can be naturally occurring or the result of oil and gas production and mining activities  Is Bloomington's water safe to drink? Does Bloomington put fluoride in its water?

Source: City of Bloomington, IN

Contaminants Found in Bloomington, Indiana's Water Supply

(Detected above health guidelines)

Bromodichloromethane

Bromodichloromethane, one of the total trihalomethanes (TTHMs), is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. Bromodichloromethane and other disinfection byproducts increase the risk of cancer and may cause problems during pregnancy.

Chlorate

Chlorate forms in drinking water as a byproduct of disinfection. Chlorate impairs thyroid function, making chlorate exposure most harmful during pregnancy and childhood.

Chloroform

Chloroform, one of the total trihalomethanes (TTHMs), is formed when chlorine or other disinfectants are used to treat drinking water. Chloroform and other disinfection byproducts increase the risk of cancer and may cause problems during pregnancy.

Chromium (Hexavalent)

Chromium (hexavalent) is a carcinogen that commonly contaminates American drinking water. Chromium (hexavalent) in drinking water may be due to industrial pollution or natural occurrences in mineral deposits and groundwater.

Fluoride

Fluoride occurs naturally in surface and groundwater and is also added to drinking water by many water systems. The fluoride that is added to water is not the naturally occurring kind, the main chemicals used to fluoridate drinking water are known as “silicofluorides” (i.e., hydrofluorosilicic acid and sodium fluorosilicate). Silicofluorides are not pharmaceutical-grade fluoride products; they are unprocessed industrial by-products of the phosphate fertilizer industry (Gross!). Since these silicofluorides undergo no purification procedures, they can contain elevated levels of arsenic — moreso than any other water treatment chemical. In addition, recent research suggests that the addition of silicofluorides to water is a risk factor for elevated lead exposure, particularly among residents who live in homes with old pipes. 

Total Trihalomethanes (TTHMs)

Trihalomethanes are cancer-causing contaminants that form during water treatment with chlorine and other disinfectants. The total trihalomethanes group includes four chemicals: chloroform, bromodichloromethane, dibromochloromethane and bromoform. 

Potential Health Effects of Consuming These Contaminants

Health risks of Bromodichloromethane in excess of health guideline

Cancer: The health guideline of 0.4 ppb for bromodichloromethane was defined by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a one-in-a-million lifetime risk of cancer. Values greater than one-in-a-million cancer risk level can result in increased cancer cases above one in a million people.

Health risks of Fluoride in excess of health guideline

Unknown: A growing body of evidence reasonably indicates that fluoridated water, in addition to other sources of daily fluoride exposure, can cause or contribute to a range of serious effects, including arthritis, damage to the developing brain, reduced thyroidfunction, and possibly osteosarcoma (bone cancer) in adolescent males.

Health risks of Chlorate in excess of health guideline: 

Thyroid: The health guideline of 210 ppb for chlorate was defined by the Environmental Protection Agency as a benchmark for testing under the Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule program. This health guideline protects against hormone disruption.

Health risks of Chloroform in excess of health guideline

Cancer: The health guideline of 1 ppb for chloroform was defined by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a one-in-a-million lifetime risk of cancer. Values greater than one-in-a-million cancer risk level can result in increased cancer cases above one in a million people.


Health risks of Chromium (Hexavalent) in excess of health guideline

Cancer: The health guideline of 0.02 ppb for chromium (hexavalent) was defined by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a public health goal, the level of a drinking water contaminant that does not pose a significant health risk. This health guideline protects against cancer.

Health risks of Trihalomethanes in excess of health guideline

Cancer: The health guideline of 0.8 ppb for trihalomethanes was defined by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a draft public health goal, the level of drinking water contaminant that does not pose a significant health risk. This health guideline protects against cancer.

Contaminant Levels in Bloomington, IN Compared to Other Regions

Bromodichloromethane

- Health Guideline: 0.06 ppb

 - Bloomington, IN: 5.00 ppb

 - National: 4.38 ppb

Chlorate: 

- Health Guideline: 210.0 ppb

- Bloomington, IN: 233.8 ppb

- National: 114.0 ppb

Chloroform

 - Health Guideline: 1.0 ppb

 - National: 11.4 ppb

 - Bloomington, IN: 56.0 ppb

Chromium (hexavalent)

 - Health Guideline: 0.02 ppb

 - Bloomington, IN: 0.0375 ppb

 - National: 0.782 ppb

Fluoride

 - Health Guideline: No standards exist

 - National: 0.437 ppb

 - Bloomington, IN: 0.600 ppb

Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs)

 - Health Guideline: 0.8 ppb

 - National: 23.4 ppb

 - Bloomington, IN: 61.5 ppb

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April Jones

A Colorado based hiker, blogger, and water quality expert...

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