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Toxic Tap: CA Issues Nation's First Hexavalent Chromium Goal

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Photo by Tyler S. Andrews via LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr
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The California EPA has issued the first U.S. public health goal for minimizing the cancer-causing metal hexavalent chromium (or, chromium 6) in drinking water, according to the L.A. Times.

During the Erin Brockovich era of contaminated groundwater in Hinkley, CA,
the average hexavalent chromium level was 1.19 parts per billion (ppb). The new state goal is 0.02 ppb.

That means for every million people who drink tap water with that level of hexavalent chromium every day for 70 years, there would likely be one additional case of cancer attributable to exposure to the metal, state officials said.

Reportedly, the new goal is "not an enforceable standard," but will be helpful for the Department of Public Health to develop one at some point in the future.

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California environmental officials have detected hexavalent chromium in the drinking water of an estimated 13 million people in 52 of the state's 58 counties, including Los Angeles.