MN Dept. of Health Releases New Dashboard on PFAS Levels in Drinking Water
The Minnesota Department of Health has released a new interactive dashboard and map to let residents who mainly get their water from public water systems see reported levels of per- and polyfluroroalkyl substances (PFAS).
The data on the map shows most systems do not have PFAS or that the levels are below the current state levels of health concern in their drinking water.
The project began in 2021 and tests community water systems across the state for PFAS. While the testing will continue through 2022, the Minnesota Department of Health will prioritize sampling the water in system that are more vulnerable for PFAS contamination. They will also address the potential public health risks first.
“Our statewide testing and dashboard are just two examples of how Minnesota continues to be a national leader in providing safe drinking water,” said Minnesota Commissioner of Health Jan Malcolm.
According to the Department of Health, PFAS is extremely stable and does not break down in the environment. It is also linked to a wide range of human health effects when exposed in high levels. These issues include higher cholesterol, changes to liver function, reduced immune response, thyroid disease, and, in the case of PFOA, increased kidney and testicular cancer.
Currently, the Department of Health has completed assessment in 401 of 900 public systems in Minnesota. These 401 systems account for about 75% of Minnesotans. About 2/3 of the systems tested do have PFAS present, but they are not at a level that would be a concern for the public health. Only one of the systems out of all tested so far exceeded the health-based guidelines and levels. Action will be taken by the appropriate agencies to reduce PFAS levels.
More information about PFAS in Minnesota can be found on the Minnesota Department of Health’s website.
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