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Water Quality

PinkTavo Member Posts: 64
I just saw this today. Wonder if the same chlorides in the domestic water supply that are ruining boilers is causing the "protective" coating on lead pipes to dissolve. Much like Flint. Plumbers, who protect our water supply, should be aware. https://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20170206/morrisania/elevated-lead-levels-ps-41-is-158

Not sure if this should go on the Politics page or Main page. Erin can decide.


  • CarriePalmer
    CarriePalmer Member Posts: 5
    I’m reminded here of the study conducted by Virginia Tech researchers in LeeAnne Walter’s home in Flint (http://cen.acs.org/articles/94/i7/Lead-Ended-Flints-Tap-Water.html). The results were staggering which said lead levels were 13,200 parts per billion, which is 900 times as high as the 15-ppb regulatory limit set by the Environmental Protection Agency.
    Whenever such incidents arise, water utilities should step forward to reduce the concentration of toxic elements. This is a grave issue because high lead levels would result in the growth of pathogenic microbes. According to EPA’s 90th percentile calculation, if 10% of homes exceeds the agency’s 15-ppb threshold, then the action is required.
    Like I read somewhere, the pipes (iron, copper, and lead which would corrode) acts as a geochemical reactor, where the molecules in the water react with the pipe. This colours when dissolved oxygen or chlorine react with elemental iron, lead or copper in the pipes.
    The lead leaches into the water from these pipes
    Thus, utilities are required to treat their water to maintain a mineral crust on the inside surfaces of their pipes called passivation layer which protects pipes’ metal from oxidants in the water.
    Major plumbing contractors in Toronto advise that if the water’s chemistry isn’t optimized, the passivation layer would start to dissolve or mineral particles would begin to flake off of the pipe’s crust.

  • mikeg2015
    mikeg2015 Member Posts: 1,194
    I believe the main issue was not mainting a oh above 8. Ideally close to 9. Our city has old pipes like Flont. PH is 8.5-9. Some homes still have lead service connections. A few mains may still be load but most have been replaced with plastic. Could be some iron in the system to.

    I think the problem was Flint switching to a lower ph source and not installing the treatment system to raise the PH.