Problems We Found In Jacksonville's Drinking Water
Kezia Snipe | Research Analyst
For our assessment of Jacksonville tap water, we aggregated water quality test data from the Jacksonville Electric Authority, the water provider for the Florida city and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as well as from samples that we collect and analyze. We cross reference these data with toxicity studies in scientific and medical literature, and look at upcoming regulatory changes. The water filters that we offer at Hydroviv are optimized for our Jacksonville customers with these numbers in mind.
Source Of Jacksonville Drinking Water
Jacksonville’s drinking water comes from the Floridan aquifer, one of the major sources of groundwater in the United States. Floridan wells are protected from surface chemical contamination by the Hawthorne formation, which is a thick layer of clay that prevents pollutants from seeping below it. Water comes from over 115 Floridan wells throughout Duval, St. Johns and Nassau Counties and is pumped from the aquifer into large reservoirs at one of 37 water treatment plants.
Arsenic Detected In Jacksonville Drinking Water
Arsenic is a toxic heavy metal that is known to cause cancer and other health issues. Unlike lead, which distributes into water from plumbing, arsenic comes from the source water itself. While Jacksonville is in compliance with EPA water quality standards, it’s important to point out that EPA’s drinking water standards balance the toxicity of the contaminant against the costs of it at the municipal scale. The most recent tap water quality report for Jacksonville reported an average arsenic concentration of 2.75 parts per billion. Hydroviv strongly recommends that anyone that lives in an area with more than 1 part per billion take steps to remove arsenic from their water, especially families with children.
Lead Levels Found In Jacksonville Drinking Water
Lead enters tap water through older lead service pipes and lead-containing plumbing. When corrosion control measures put in place by the municipality fail (like what recently happened in Flint, Michigan), lead leaches into the drinking water, and can reach dangerous levels. Currently, 10% of samples analyzed for lead in Jacksonville are 2.26 parts per billion. Though the city is in compliance with loose federal regulations, the EPA and CDC have both acknowledged that there is no safe level of lead, and federal regulations do not take into account levels measured at an individual tap.
Disinfection Byproducts (DBPs) In Jacksonville Drinking Water
Disinfection Byproducts (DBPs) are a category of emerging contaminants that form when chlorine-based disinfectants react with naturally-occurring organic matter. Although these chemicals are only loosely regulated at this time, the EPA website discloses that that high levels of DBPs are associated with an increased risk of bladder cancer, as well as kidney, liver, and central nervous system problems.
Chlorine In Jacksonville Drinking Water
Like most other municipalities in the U.S., Jacksonville injects its water with chlorine to protect against waterborne illness. While not typically considered to be harmful on its own, many people find that removing chlorine from drinking water greatly enhances its taste and odor.
Still Have Questions About Jacksonville Tap Water?
Hydroviv is a water filtration company that uses water quality data to optimize water filters for each city’s water. The contaminants that we list above are what we consider to be major “points of emphasis” that we use to build water filters that are built specifically for Jacksonville's tap water, but all of the water filters that we build provide broad protection against other contaminants commonly found in drinking water (e.g. VOCs, heavy metals [including lead], pharmaceuticals, solvents, pesticides, mercury).
If you’re interested in learning more about water filters that have been optimized for Jacksonville's tap water, or just have questions about water quality in general, feel free to visit www.hydroviv.com, reach out by email (email@example.com) or through our live chat. We also frequently post water-related news on Twitter or Facebook. We pride ourselves in being a reputable source of information on water quality, and your questions will be answered by scientists, not salespeople (we don't have any salespeople).
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- Kezia Snipe