Comments by condorhiker

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Posted on June 21 at 12:16 p.m.

1. I'm surprised that Das Williams would bring up the point that the hexavalent chromium (Cr6) in the Santa Ynez River Water Conservation District water is naturally-occurring. That doesn't make it any less deadly. Would Mr. Williams exempt the SYRCD if the level of naturally-occurring arsenic exceeded the Maximum Contamination Level (MCL) mandated by the State of California? I think not. The difference between arsenic and Cr6 is that arsenic kills much quicker.
2. SamRedDog has the numbers exactly backwards. The new MCL set by the State for permissible levels of Cr6 in drinking water is 500 times MORE than the level shown to be significant as a potential carcinogen. The California Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) on July 27, 2011, published the nation’s first public health goal (PHG) for Cr6 in drinking water. The final PHG for Cr6 was set at 0.02 parts per billion (ppb). The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has set its final regulation establishing the drinking water Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) for Cr6 at 10 parts per billion. So the ratio of the MCL to the PHG is the ratio of 10 to 0.02 or 500 times. The level of Cr6 allowed in the water is 500 times the public health goal! BTW, the public health goal for Cr6 is not a maximum “safe” level for exposure to the chemical. Rather, it serves as an assessment of the health risk posed by drinking water that contains Cr6, based on an estimated “one in one million” lifetime cancer risk level. For every million people who drink tap water with that level of Cr6 each day for 70 years, there is likely to be one additional case of cancer from exposure to the chemical. But what if the level of Cr6 is 500 times the PHG? Does that mean that 500 additional people out of a million will die of cancer?
3. The Goleta Water District shows in its “GWD Consumer Confidence Report, Results of Extensive Water Quality Testing for 2012” that the Cr6 levels at upper end of its groundwater range is 1.5 parts per billion, 75 times the PHG! Are they delivering water with that level of Cr6 contamination to their customers? My inquiries to them have not been answered.

On Chromium 6 Cursing Santa Ynez Water District

Posted on June 13 at 5:52 p.m.

This article was really apropos for me, as I just got back from a volunteer condor nest watch for the USFWS in the Sespe Wilderness. Your article had great photos! You were really fortunate to be in the right place at the right time!

On California Condors Close-Up

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