Cadmium is a soft, bluish-white metal usually associated with zinc. It's used in the manufacture of batteries, electronics and nuclear reactors. It's plated onto steel to prevent corrosion, and two of its compounds (cadmium sulfide and cadmium selenide) are used to produce pigment for plastics as well.
Cadmium can enter the environment through a variety of industrial and agricultural operations, and as a byproduct of fossil fuel use. General use has declined, and now about 80% of cadmium in the environment comes from nickel-cadmium batteries. Cadmium often enters water as the result of: deterioration of galvanized plumbing, fertilizer contamination, and industrial waste in general.
Health Impact of Cadmium in Drinking Water
The US EPA has established a Maximum Contaminant Level of 0.005 milligrams per liter (mg/L) for cadmium in drinking water. The Agency has found cadmium to potentially cause a variety of effects from acute exposures, including: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle cramps, salivation, sensory disturbances, liver injury, convulsions, shock and renal failure.
Drinking water levels which are considered "safe" for short-term exposures are: 0.04 mg/L for a 10-kg (22 lb.) child consuming 1 liter of water per day for one- to ten-day exposures, and 0.005 mg/L for a longer-term (up to 7 years) exposure. EPA has established a reference dose for cadmium at – 5x10-4 mg/kg/day.
The reference dose is based upon chronic intake that will result in the kidney concentration of 200 µg/g. No-observed-adverse-effect level (NOAEL) for Cadmium for humans is 0.01 mg/kg/day. Cadmium has the chronic potential to cause kidney, liver, bone and blood damage from long- term exposure at levels above the MCL. There is inadequate evidence to state whether or not cadmium has the potential to cause cancer from lifetime exposures in drinking water.
Currently we have not tested any Epic Water Filters products for the removal or reduction of Cadmium but have tested for a number of similar heavy metals.