State and city NOT testing drinking water for radioactivity because of EPA — EPA is “taking the lead”

Published: April 16th, 2011 at 10:48 am ET


Radiation traces in nearby water supply, Cleveland Daily Banner, April 15, 2011:

[Emphasis Added]

Whether the Cleveland area’s drinking water supply includes any traces of iodine-131 is unknown because the national sampling initiative is being led by EPA, according to Craig Mullinax, manager of Cleveland Utilities’ Water Division.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is taking the lead to determine the impact of the radiation which will drift to and across the U.S. through time,” Mullinax said late Thursday. “U.S. EPA has apparently taken some samples in our area.” …

Cleveland Utilities does not sample for iodine-131 isotopes in the drinking water,” Mullinax said. “Current drinking water sampling guidelines from the U.S. EPA and the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation do not require water utilities to collect and analyze for this radioactive isotope.” …

As a preventive measure, Mullinax said Cleveland Utilities has contacted the TDEC office in Chattanooga, but pointed out he was advised the state water quality control agency has not been directed by EPA to begin any random drinking water samplings of its own. …

“They (TDEC) have not received any directive from the U.S. EPA to conduct sampling for iodine-131 or to require Cleveland Utilities to sample,” he stressed.

Read the report here.

Published: April 16th, 2011 at 10:48 am ET


Related Posts

  1. EPA finds DRINKING water with radioactive iodine-131 in Idaho and Washington — Samples collected last week April 4, 2011
  2. New EPA data shows iodine-131 in Los Angeles tap water — Still no testing for radioactive cesium April 21, 2011
  3. EPA posts latest radiation data: Cesium-137 in Delaware drinking water above “Maximum Contaminant Level” June 2, 2011
  4. Top Massachusetts health official: Drinking water is ‘pretty safe’ because cities don’t use rainwater as a primary water source April 22, 2011
  5. East Coast city’s tap water has highest radiation in US — Philadelphia only .8 pCi/L below EPA’s maximum contaminant level April 10, 2011

31 comments to State and city NOT testing drinking water for radioactivity because of EPA — EPA is “taking the lead”

  • Cuica

    I can’t help but think if the Fukushima crisis had been caused by a terrorist act we would all be better off. The goverment would be scurry around collecting proof (testing water, check air monitors, etc), that the USA was under attack. What with it being an indusry SNAFU/Natural disaster… well, there’s not much we can do about that….let’s wait and see what the Industry will do next…..

  • 67Mopar

    This is typical of local government by a Democrat majority.

    • It’s typical of a government that values money over people.

      Our government is run by corporations. I think you’re implying that all of our major corporations and their leadership are part of the Democratic Party. I think they laugh at the two party system and support Democrats and Republicans that take bribes in exchange for favors. Party affiliations are for the Proles.

      • splashy

        I’m inclined to agree with you. The problem is the wealthy who make money by cutting costs that lead to polluting don’t want to pay for the costs of the problems caused by their polluting.

        Money, money, money is where it’s at. If we can make them pay for the costs, then they will stop polluting.

    • splashy

      Seriously? You are going to try to make this a partisan thing?

      Ok, so who wants to cut the funds to the EPA? Who always whines about how much we are taxed and doesn’t want to fund things that are for everyone?

      Personally, I think that this should be for EVERYONE to think about and want.

      • splashy

        The comment above about a partisan thing was directed at 67Mopar.

        • dan

          It’s best not to “feed the trolls”, since it can escalate, and disrupt useful discussions. And some trolls are probably paid to disrupt discussions like the ones we’re having here.

  • informed

    We are Screwed !

  • You better get the word out on the new data. Blow your mind stuff.
    Please enjoy!

    The top video will BLOW YOUR MIND! I learned TONS!

  • Glowing potato

    Ignorance is bliss

  • Northern Exposure

    Stick our head in the sand and it’ll all go away.

    See no evil, speak no evil, hear no evil… so the evil doesn’t exist then, right?

  • Michelle

    I’m waiting for the radiation detector APP for the smart phone so I can wave it over produce before I buy. I hope some savvy individual is working on one.

  • The city employees of Cleveland should wait for EPA dictates before eating, drinking, or going to the bathroom.

  • WindorSolarPlease

    Test the water for goodness sakes..geeezzz

  • Jack

    I, do you hear Me, I By the Authority of ME, command you
    Tennessee Burro-Crats to get at least ONE INTELLIGENT person
    to acquire WATER_TESTING Capability, Equipment, and Support,
    This is
    Right Now,
    the TEST of competence….
    if you have some political IDIOT flapping their mouth about
    “What WE are doing…what WE are LOOKING Into”,
    you need to humanely, but FIRMLY Remove that IDIOT from
    any position which makes any Comments as representative of
    a Government, whether Local, County, Municipal, State, Federal.
    If You don’t know about Nuclear contamination, Health,
    Fallout history, then, YOU DON’T SPEAK, you freekin’
    “Authority-Figure” Idiots.
    It is a particularly painful reality in New Mexico, that Spanish
    Catholics are PARTICULARLY STUPID, and get all the jobs
    where somebody is supposed to be EDUCATED and INFORMED.
    So, let’s all put a quick end to all the “Politically Correct”
    ETHNIC IDIOTS being in ANY position where they SPEAK for the people. Idiots are IDIOTS, and have no part, now that INTELLIGENCE is desperately needed.

    • mike christian

      You are so wrong and bigoted. New Mexico actually has the greatest number of Phd.s per capita of any state. It blows away those idiotic rednecks in the state immediately to it’s east.

  • Noah

    Independent Water Quality Tests

    In the light of the lack of testing of drinking water by state and municipal authorities it is reasonable to assume the following:

    From independent water quality tests throughout the nation, rainwater has largely been found to contain radioactive contaminates.

    River water, surface vegetation and produce have been contaminated by rainwater.

    Rain water has carried the radiation into the soil and into ground water. The ground water is likely contaminated.

    There are no reports that any tested area in the northern hemisphere that now remain totally clear of any tell tale Iodine-131.

    Therefore based on data reported thus far
    we are screwed and should anticipate more of the same. The radiation contamination is bio-cumulative, each passing minute adds to the previous fallout. The passage of time therefore and weather patterns are variables that will determine at what rate the contamination will occur.

    Protective individual action to purify your own water is the last line of defense. Whole house and point of use filtration is required.

    Personal Responsibility over ones health

    The only person left who will defend you and your family is you. Act now, swim against the tide of banana promoting experts who recommend doing nothing as civilization is being poisoned though drinking and cooking with raw tap water. Not to speak of showering, washing laundry and baby in it.

    Resist the urge to give up, you can do this. Think of all the challenges you have overcome. Take a moment and gather yourself.


    Good comment, Noah. I want to get on your ark~!

    I think that all those who are “clued in” from all over the world and U.S. here must contact D.C.–the EPA, Obama, etc. NOW. Yes, they are out to lunch, but we can force them to come back to work. We can harass them until they pay attention. Call your state reps, ALL Congressmen, and ALL public health authorities. They work for us and they have a public, fiduciary duty to protect citizens and U.S. natural resources. We have the power in numbers and the power in desperation. Time is of the essence. There won’t be much to lose. It’s finally time to rise up on this situation and end the silence.

    While I can stand learning that we are directly facing a long-term disaster that exceeds the lethality of Chernobyl many times over, I CANNOT STAND LETTING OUR GOVT. BLATANTLY IGNORE THE PROBLEM…just watching, waiting, and abetting the destruction?!! NO!!! That’s not viable. I cannot stand for that!!!!

  • Cat101

    Thanks, Noah. Your contributions are very helpful. Do you know what is the point of use filtration method that we use? Also, do you know if the boiling or distillation of contaminated water releases the radioactivity into the air? Thanks for any info…

    • Northern Exposure

      Sorry Cat101, boiling only kills bacteria. Remember, radionuclides are micro sized in comparison to say a hydrogen or oxygen molecule… literally nano sized. Nor can you “kill” a radionuclide (ie: boiling).

      There is no way to completely filter out radiactive isotopes, some yes, all no (reverse osmosis can remove a small portion). It basically has to run its course at whatever decay rate that particular isotope breaks down at.

      The only thing you can do is to try to filter it out of your own body as quickly as possible to minimize beta/gamma internal exposure and to supplement your body with excess treatments to slow down the beta/gamma efficacy until it does filter out via urine/feces.

      And Noah is correct about the biggest worry being bioaccumulation. A slow steady continuous low-dosage of certain radionuclides ingested daily will break down your body’s cellular membranes actually much faster than if you had one big external blast of radiation. Some of these isotopes take several months to filter out of your body (cesium-137,strontium-90, to name a couple) and in the meantime, you’re ingesting a little bit more every day and adding to the beta/gamma exposure risks.

      When it comes to internal contamination combined with bioaccumulation, there is absolutely no “safe levels”.

      To compare a one time external cosmic ray exposure via “cross-country plane ride” (as we are constantly hearing from the nuclear apologists) with the likes of a steady stream of internal bioaccumulation is not only misleading information… it’s a criminal logical fallacy.

    • Noah

      Point of use filtration

      Cat 101, Northern Exposure is correct.

      “There is no way to completely filter out radiactive isotopes, some yes, all no (reverse osmosis can remove a small portion).”

      However, given the immediate need, we can use the capability that reverse osmosis has to offer to our advantage. Emergency response is not always the best care you can give. My suggestions must be understood from this perspective. What I am about to suggest is comparable to emergency care received from a paramedic team on board an ambulance or Medivac chopper. It is a first response or emergent care received on intake at the ER.

      Reverse osmosis has become the industry standard for purification of bottled water. The process has prefilters which included, sediment and carbon filtration prior to the RO processes. Post filtration includes last stage carbon and ultra filtration down to 3 to 5 microns. Laboratory and pharmacutical grade post RO filtration demands a different, yet additional stage with I will not discuss in this post. However, I will make my best recommendation post RO filtration for residential point of use potable water purification.

      Let us begin with the Kitchen.

      The greatest volume of drinking water and water used for cooking flows through the Kitchen faucet. We will begin at the point of highest use.

      I advocate the use of under the counter RO systems, which pipe the purified water up to a separate faucet which will be installed by drilling a hole, or for stainless steel surfaces a punch tool will work, if no pre-existing hole is already present.

      Previously, the sump type RO unit, required the manual change out of 10 inch filters, requiring manually taking a special plastic round sump wrench and one by one opening and loading and closing the sumps. This required contact with the used filters which will by change out time be loaded with impurities that the filter has removed from your water over a 6 to 12 month period.

      In a radioactive environment an nuclear hygienist working for military or civilian facilities, or NBC training officer with the military, will not advise the physical handling of used filtration media. After 6 months of use it will be hot. In larger operations of scale, while taking on the cleaning of radioactive waste water filtration media becomes so hot, personnel cannot even approach the filtration device, let alone open the sump to replace the filtration media. This was problematic. Then the idea came to produce an encapsulated disposable filter cartridge that would be monitored and removed before it reached dangerous levels. Originally very large cartridges were designed for industry use and required carts to move them. Personnel were adequately suited for exposure levels while working to remove and replenish threshold cartridges. The spent used cartridges were moved to entombment burial sites.

      The encapsulated filter technology evolved through three decades until it became available for civilian residential use.
      Excuse me my wife, Mrs. Noah is calling me for lunch. I will post this segment lest it be lost by power outage, and continue after lunch is done.

    • Noah

      Point of use filtration, continued…

      Lunch was excellent. Mrs. Noah prepared some pre-311 creamed chicken, very soft, delicious with sea salt and rice.

      Thank you Cat 101 for your patience.

      This background on encapsulated filtration cartridges is very important to know in a radioactive environment. To approach filter change in a pre-311 manner will, as time passes, become more and more hazardous. You must avoid opening a sump filtration container, due to nuclear hazard. Opening a sump in your primary food preparation area will surely lead to unintentional leakage and splash on to the kitchen floor, on your hands and body. The longer this event drags on, the higher the hazard, there will just be more radiation accumulating in the filter media.

      The RO unit you select must be based on this design, encapsulated filtration cartridges.

      Fortunately, and Providentially, this type of RO system based on encapsulated filtration cartridges, is now available for residential home use, and it is under the counter installable, esthetically pleasing and affordable.

      Premier RO-Pure, Model WP RO-4

      Costco sells the unit for $189.99 in my area.

      I recommend adding a permeate pump to the unit, this will save a lot of water in the long run. Or buy the unit with a permeate pump already installed from US Water, who is the largest distributor of Watts systems in the US.

      Please remember that this is is a emergency response recommendation. Better solutions exist, but under the present circumstance we all need help with this problem now. Costco is a drive away. Buy one for your kitchen and if you can afford it, one for each bathroom and one for your business. You can use the water to wash your face and brush your teeth with, as well as a late night drink of water for the kids.

      Cartridge change is easy and safe, with no spill danger during change out. It’s so easy to do, just twist and press the button, dispose of the cartridge in the trash when it is time to change out. The frequent regular 6 month change out will keep radiation levels low.

      RO will remove 92%+ of uranium and preliminary unpublished tests seem to indicate the other radioactive particle removal at about the same rate.

      What about the other 8%?

      Good question, now the other part.

      Water finishing filtration

      In my post before lunch, I made reference to water finishing for labs and pharmaceutical applications. This subject will not be discussed in this post. But, I will comment on the topic of home water finishing.

      Many minds have grappled and are now grappling with this problem of how to remove the remaining 8% or less, you may get up to 96% removal depending of several factors, such as filter life. New and freshly installed filters and RO membrane will perform better that an older one, producing a cleaner product.

      So we need to remove 4% to 8% of contaminate from RO finished water. How do we do that?

      It has been suggested that the RO water be run through a second time through a secondary post RO systems, which would yield a reduction of contaminate reduction of 50%, assuming filters and membrane at peak efficiently. But this is speculation.

      Distillation has been suggested, however radioactive Iodine-131 was found rising in the steam emissions from Fukushima. This isotope can ride on H20 in various states, such as steam (gas state), rain (liguid state) and snow (solid state as ice).

      A resin based, DI system seems to be a better solution to purify out the remaining radiation. A dual resin two tank system may work. Resins pull out the radioactive particles using electrical ion charges on the surface of resins contained in the filtration media. The best resin based DI systems is under investigation and testing.

      But what can we do now to remove the 4-8%?

      Fortunately and providentially, after decades of development, ion exchange tech is now available for home use.

      A five stage filtration system, compact, transportable and affordable is now here.

      It is the Zero water Ion Exchange filter.

      Order through Amazon, a Zero water Pitcher, order at least two. It comes with a filter inclosed in the box. We enjoy having two because when you are using one to pour the other is refilling. Open your RO faucet, fill the top of the pitcher, wait and there you have water with Zero particles per million. The ion exchange process will remove a good portion of the remaining particles within the water. By filling your Zero water pitcher with RO water you will extend the life of the ZeroWater cartridge.

      The company has not tested their filter with radioactive water, and makes no claims that their product removes isotopes, such as Iodine-131, etc.

      So there you have it, my best shot at solving the problem today, using what is available, a Angus MacGyver solution.

      There are better answers for sure, but none as readily available as a drive to Costco and on line order from Amazon.

  • You can make your own equipment and supplies not that difficult. Have all the how to’s. Get on it.

  • Cat101

    wow, Noah, thanks for your most thorough explanation. I have heard the term reverse osmosis thrown around but didn’t really know what was involved…thank you so much for the how to advice…and thank you also to Northern Exposure and The Sandman Project for your thoughts and advice…there is alot to learn and not much time. I really appreciate the helpful information on this site and to be honest, it makes me feel not quite so hopeless knowing that there are still people out there willing to help each other. This site is the best thing going right now in difficult and uncertain times.

  • whimbrel

    Agree ignore the trolls they are less than useless. But dont ignore this…. in the gulf the exact same thing happened. No data, everyone being told it is safe, no problems, dont look here… and now… the people are sick and dying all over the gulf. that was the plan and it worked well. Using it again…..

  • Hello Everyone, I have been following the nuclear situation in Japan from March, 2011.
    I am including a website link for leaving a reply to the comments/posts.
    In late 2008, I had to to undergo chemo/radiation therapy. Also suffered with the associated symptoms of radiation sickness, nausea, hair loss, general debilitating side effects.
    I did a google search a week or so ago and came across the
    that gives a way to rid the body of radiation for those having received doses of radiation either from medical treatments or from exposure.
    You may also google search the words: how to rid radiation from the human body I purchased it as it sells the method in the form of an e-book upon payment. Before the link for payment there are a few pages of informational text and two worthwhile videos. The website is very well done.
    I was leery of paying for it but I felt that it may be worth it as they charge for the download of the e-book. It is copyright protected.
    Because I had suffer from lingering effects of my medical treatments, I felt that it may be certainly effective and worthwhile.
    After doing the treatment as given, I felt as if my nervous and body had been somehow cleansed. Where previously, levels of anxiety, nervousness,illness that seemed to manifest during and after the medical treatments and by doing this method for relief of the effects of radiation, seemed to have disappeared. I am sharing this information with all of you. I do not know why or how this method works,however it is worthwhile checking out. The website claims it is useful for reducing low to moderate levels of radiation doses. There is a health disclaimer statement on this website, that advises folks using their information to seek medical advice from their doctor and should not soley depend on their system.
    Respectfully, Michael

  • Dorr

    Also, if the radiation will be in the air for awhile, would it be prudent to start wearing face masks when we go outside?

    People with asthma wear face masks on high pollen days; so it doesn’t seem too farfetched to wear one during high-rad days.

    • Reply to Dorr’s post/comment:
      Size of radioactive particles are atomic in size. Using face masks, to filter out dust or pollen will not be effective for filtering radiation particles.
      michael shaztz

  • xdrfox

    How will get the Isotopes out of the future crops ?
    consumers’ fear of radiation affecting a wide range of other products that the government has not placed shipment restrictions on.
    The price of strawberries, has halved. beef has been returned and even lumber shipments have been canceled.
    At the Metropolitan Central Wholesale Market, the price of lettuce dropped to 20-40 percent of the same period last year in late March. The government has not imposed any restrictions on lettuce.
    Cabbages, trading at 69 percent of their yearly average on Thursday.

  • xdrfox

    consumers’ fear of radiation affecting a wide range of other products that the government has not placed shipment restrictions on.
    The price of strawberries, has halved. beef has been returned and even lumber shipments have been cancelled.
    At the Metropolitan Central Wholesale Market, the price of lettuce dropped to 20-40 percent of the same period last year in late March. The government has not imposed any restrictions on lettuce.
    Cabbages, trading at 69 percent of their yearly average on Thursday.

  • I do not trust the EPA or any other three-letter agency. None of them are doing the jobs they say they are doing. Being self-sufficient is the way to go!