Are Nutrients In Our Drinking Water A Concern For Human Health?

Nitrate consumption has shown no national potential health risk for individual’s drinking water from the major aquifers that are buried deep below the grounds surface. There were concerns from only 4 of the 33 major aquifers that were sampled. Out of these 4 aquifers there were a 15% finding of levels of nitrates that exceeded the — USEPA standards. All of the 4 aquifers were found in shallow agricultural areas that were surrounded by sand and gravel which are more susceptible to contamination from land fertilizers.

Nearly half of the major aquifers that were tested at least one of the 20 or 30 wells contained higher levels of nitrates than the — USEPA standard. Many of these aquifers that were tested used water for rural and domestic needs. You can find detailed reports on your areas water levels through links on the Purity Bay El Paso page.

More than 15% of all shallow water ground water samples taken shown higher levels of nitrates than the standards that were set forth for public safety. The increased levels of nitrates present a concern that contamination could occur in the deeper wells that supply domestic and rural water supplies.

Because surface water or water found close to the grounds surface is more vulnerable to contaminants due to human activities such as fertilizing, use of pesticides and even animal waste from farming most aquifers are buried deep below the grounds surface in order to add protection from the contaminants. The aquifers are protected by clay and rock that help to impede the movement of the water and the nitrate. The older aquifers are hundreds of years old and are less susceptible to contamination from recent land practices. Find out what type of water source you have in your area by visiting Purity bay resource pages.

Understanding the geology and hydrology can help to determine the protection methods that need to be implemented to prevent the movement of shallow waters to the deeper aquifers. Researchers are spending their time working on developing patterns that show the changes from season to season and from different areas that significantly help their strategies for creating treatments to protect the water from future contaminants.

Most of the large rivers and smaller streams that have been tested show no signs for concern in our drinking water due to nitrate contamination. The samples that were taken provided proof that the levels of nitrates that exceed the standards for safe drinking water were from 2 streams that did not provide drinking water to the public.

Source: http://water.usgs.gov/

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