TEXAS
4,641 systems serving 20,980,320 people
 
 
 
  This drinking water quality report shows results of tests conducted by water utilities in Texas, provided to the Environmental Working Group (EWG) by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality . It is part of EWG's national database that includes 47,667 drinking water utilities and 20 million test results from 45 states and the District of Columbia. Water utilities nationwide detected more than 300 pollutants between 2004 and 2009. More than half of these chemicals are unregulated, legal in any amount. Despite this widespread contamination, the federal government invests few resources in protecting rivers, reservoirs, and groundwater from pollution in the first place. The information below summarizes drinking water quality for this state.

 
Chemicals
Water Utilities
Population Served
Detected Chemicals
122
4,641
20,352,009
Exceed health guidelines*
49
4,397
20,205,298
Exceed Legal Limits*
33
1,538
10,502,329
Unregulated chemicals detected
60
2,296
17,901,528
* Water utilities are noted as exceeding the legal limit if any test is above the maximum contaminant level (MCL). Most MCLs are based on annual averages so exceeding the MCL for one test does not necessarily indicate that the system is out of compliance.

 
 
 
  49 Contaminants Exceeding Health Based Limits

Contaminants detected in Texas drinking water above health guidelines, according to an Environmental Working Group analysis of data obtained from state water authorities

Contaminant
Population
Number of Systems
At Any Level Above Health Limits At Any Level Above Health Limits
Dibromochloromethane 19,418,382 19,326,412 3,358 3,264
Bromodichloromethane 18,672,807 18,672,807 2,814 2,814
Bromoform 18,224,266 18,224,266 3,036 3,036
Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs) 19,620,471 17,705,817 3,635 2,390
Dichloroacetic acid 17,593,159 17,593,159 2,087 2,087
Total haloacetic acids (HAAs) 16,000,265 15,878,134 1,739 1,710
Chloroform 17,938,734 14,972,214 2,458 1,389
Alpha particle activity 7,856,260 7,856,260 1,638 1,638
Trichloroacetic acid 15,950,014 6,337,156 1,600 433
Lead (total) 5,817,405 5,817,405 900 900

 
 
 
  Sources of Texas Drinking Water Contaminants

The contaminants identified in Texas drinking water come from a wide variety of sources, including agriculture, industry, water treatment plants, and polluted storm runoff from urban areas.

122 Total Contaminants Detected (2004 - 2009)
23 Agricultural Pollutants
(pesticides, fertilizer, factory farms)

Arsenic (total), Cyanide, Nitrate & nitrite, Nitrate, Nitrite, Selenium (total), Lindane, Prometon , Dalapon, Simazine, Metolachlor, Atrazine, Alachlor (Lasso), Butachlor, Bromacil, Bromomethane, Benzoic acid, Iodomethane, Chloroacetonitrile, o-Dichlorobenzene, p-Dichlorobenzene, 1,2-Dichloropropane, Ethylbenzene

39 Sprawl and Urban Pollutants
(road runoff, lawn pesticides, human waste)

Nitrate, Copper, Nitrate & nitrite, Lead (total), Arsenic (total), Tetrachloroethylene, MTBE, Nitrite, Xylenes (total), Dalapon, Cadmium (total), Antimony (total), Mercury (total inorganic), m- & p- Xylene, Dichloromethane (methylene chloride), Cyanide, o-Xylene, Benzene, Acetone, Silver (total), p-Dichlorobenzene, Methyl ethyl ketone, Di(2-Ethylhexyl) adipate, Di-n-butylphthalate, Naphthalene, Lindane, Diethylphthalate, bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, n-Propylbenzene, Phenanthrene, Butane, Pyrene, Butyl Benzylphthalate, Chrysene, Benzo[b]fluoranthene, Benzo[k]fluoranthene, Benzo[a]anthracene, Isopropyl alcohol, Benzoic acid

93 Industrial Pollutants

Aluminum, Arsenic (total), Barium (total), Cadmium (total), Chromium (total), Cyanide, Lead (total), Manganese, Mercury (total inorganic), Nitrate & nitrite, Nitrate, Nitrite, Selenium (total), Silver (total), Antimony (total), Thallium (total), Lindane, p-Isopropyltoluene, Di(2-Ethylhexyl) adipate, Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, Hexachlorocyclopentadiene, Cyanogen Chloride, Butane, 1-Chlorobutane, Ethyl Acetate, Isopropyl alcohol, Chloromethane, Chloroethane, Benzoic acid, Acetone, Methyl ethyl ketone, Naphthalene, Methyl isobutyl ketone, MTBE, Tetrahydrofuran, 2-Hexanone, Phenanthrene, Diethylphthalate, Pyrene, Di-n-butylphthalate, Butyl Benzylphthalate, Methyl methacrylate, Chrysene, bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, Benzo[b]fluoranthene, Pentane, n-Hexane, cis-1,2-Dichloroethylene, Dibromomethane, 1,3-Dichloropropane, 2,2-Dichloropropane, 1,2,4-Trimethylbenzene, n-Butylbenzene, 1,3,5-Trimethylbenzene, Bromochloromethane, Methyl Acetate, Iodomethane, Chloroacetonitrile, Acetaldhyde, Propanal, Butanal, Pentanal, Heptanal, Nonanal, Xylenes (total), Dichloromethane (methylene chloride), p-Dichlorobenzene, 1,1-Dichloroethylene, 1,1-Dichloroethane, 1,2-Dichloroethane, 1,1,1-Trichloroethane, Carbon tetrachloride, 1,2-Dichloropropane, Trichloroethylene, Tetrachloroethylene, Benzene, Toluene, Ethylbenzene, Isopropylbenzene, Styrene, o-Xylene, n-Propylbenzene, m- & p- Xylene, Alpha particle activity (excl radon and uranium), Alpha particle activity (incl. radon & uranium), Combined Uranium (mg/L), Radium-226, Radium-228, Alpha, Dissolved, Alpha particle activity, Bromide-82, Combined Uranium (pCi/L), Gross beta particle activity (pCi/L)

23 Water Treatment and Distribution Byproducts
(pipes and fixtures, treatment chemicals and byproducts)

Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs), Total haloacetic acids (HAAs), Chloroform, Bromodichloromethane, Dibromochloromethane, Dichloroacetic acid, Trichloroacetic acid, Bromoform, Dibromoacetic acid, Monochloroacetic acid, Bromochloroacetic acid, Monobromoacetic acid, Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, Cadmium (total), Chloromethane, Dibromomethane, Bromochloromethane, Chloroethane, Dichloroacetonitrile, 2-Hexanone, Benzo[k]fluoranthene, Benzo[a]anthracene, Dichloroiodomethane

25 Naturally Occurring
(naturally present but increased for lands denuded by sprawl, agriculture, or industrial development)

Nitrate, Copper, Nitrate & nitrite, Barium (total), Lead (total), Arsenic (total), Manganese, Radium-228, Radium-226, Alpha particle activity, Alpha particle activity (excl radon and uranium), Gross beta particle activity (pCi/L), Combined Uranium (pCi/L), Chromium (total), Alpha particle activity (incl. radon & uranium), Combined Uranium (mg/L), Aluminum, Selenium (total), Nitrite, Mercury (total inorganic), Chloromethane, Cyanide, Silver (total), Alpha, Dissolved, Bromide-82

61 Unregulated Contaminants
EPA has not established a maximum legal limit in tapwater for these contaminants

Lead (total), Prometon , p-Isopropyltoluene, Metolachlor, Butachlor, Cyanogen Chloride, Butane, 1-Chlorobutane, Ethyl Acetate, Isopropyl alcohol, Bromacil, Chloromethane, Bromomethane, Chloroethane, Benzoic acid, Acetone, Methyl ethyl ketone, Naphthalene, Methyl isobutyl ketone, MTBE, Tetrahydrofuran, 2-Hexanone, Phenanthrene, Diethylphthalate, Pyrene, Di-n-butylphthalate, Butyl Benzylphthalate, Methyl methacrylate, Chrysene, bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, Benzo[a]anthracene, Benzo[b]fluoranthene, Benzo[k]fluoranthene, Pentane, n-Hexane, Dibromomethane, 1,3-Dichloropropane, 2,2-Dichloropropane, 1,2,4-Trimethylbenzene, n-Butylbenzene, 1,3,5-Trimethylbenzene, Bromochloromethane, Methyl Acetate, Bromochloroacetic acid, Iodomethane, Dichloroacetonitrile, Chloroacetonitrile, Acetaldhyde, Propanal, Butanal, Pentanal, Heptanal, Nonanal, Dichloroiodomethane, 1,1-Dichloroethane, Isopropylbenzene, n-Propylbenzene, Alpha, Dissolved, Bromide-82, Uranium-234 (pCi/L), Uranium-238 (pCi/L)

 
 
 
  Testing Summary for Texas

The federal government has set standards for some of the pollutants found in tap water supplies.

Contaminants reported as tested by water suppliers in Texas 214
  Contaminants tested due to federal law: 7397
  Contaminants tested in addition to those required by federal law: 117
 
 
 
  Violation Summary for Texas

Data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency includes the following violations of federal standards in Texas since 2004.

Violation Type Number of Violations
Over maximum contaminant level, Average 4,441
Failure to monitor, Routine Major (Coliform bacteria) 2,490
Public Notification Violation for National Primary Drinking Water Regulations 2,116
Over maximum contaminant level, Single Sample 1,003
Failure to report information to the public or state agency in the Consumer Confidence Report 595
Failure to monitor, Routine Minor (Coliform bacteria) 505
Maximum contaminant level, Monthly (Coliform bacteria) 424
Filter Turbidity Reporting 368
Failure to monitor, Repeat Major (Coliform bacteria) 203
Failure to monitor, Repeat Minor (Coliform bacteria) 130
Excess Turbidity at 0.3 NTU 90
Failure to monitor or report, Routine/Repeat (Indicators of microbial or virus contamination) 79
Excess Turbidity at 1 NTU 62
Treatment Technique (Surface Water Treatment Rule) 39
Maximum contaminant level, Acute (Coliform bacteria) 29
Monitoring and Reporting Disinfection Byproduct Rule 14
Failure to monitor or report, Routine/Repeat (Indicators of microbial or virus contamination) 1



Sources : EWG (Environmental Working Group)