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One Planet: How safe is our drinking water?

On this edition of Your Call’s One Planet Series, we're discussing the quality of drinking water in the United States. According to the Environmental Working Group's Tap Water Database, since 2019, more than 320 toxic substances have been detected in US drinking water systems.

Millions of Americans unwittingly drink toxic substances, such as arsenic, lead, and chemicals known as PFAS. We'll discuss the findings, the health effects of drinking these chemicals, and learn more about how the infrastructure bill will address this.


Dr. Tasha Stoiber, scientist with the Environmental Working Group

Maura Allaire, assistant professor of water economics and policy at the University of California, Irvine

Louie Pitt, Jr, council person for the Pacific NorthWest Electric Power and Conservation Council and former director of governmental affairs for The Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs in Oregon

Web Resources:

EWG's Tap Water Database 2021 Update

EWG’s water filter guide

EWG: Common drinking water contaminant linked to spike in Parkinson’s disease

The Deschutes River Conservancy: Water Problems At Warm Springs Unacceptable, Says Widen

Grist: California’s water systems are in deep trouble

CNN: Study estimates 15,000 cancer cases could stem from chemicals in California tap water

NPR: Tribes hope infrastructure law means they'll finally get clean drinking water

Malihe Razazan is the senior producer of KALW's daily call-in program, Your Call.
Rose Aguilar has been the host of Your Call since 2006. She became a regular media roundtable guest in 2001. In 2019, the San Francisco Press Club named Your Call the best public affairs program. In 2017, The Nation named it the most valuable local radio show.