Q&A: What Really Happened to the Water in Flint, Michigan?

from Scientific American (March 2, 2016)

After Flint, Mich., switched from purchasing water via Detroit to sourcing locally from the Flint River, residents began noticing a change in water quality. One resident—Lee Anne Walters—suspected the water might be toxic, and had her water tested for lead. She brought samples to Marc Edwards, an environmental engineer at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and a world-renowned expert on water treatment. He found lead levels in her tap water at 13,200 parts per billion; the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency sounds the alarm at 15 ppb. She subsequently discovered her three-year-old son had blood lead levels so high that he was considered lead poisoned. In fact, researchers estimated 4 percent of all Flint’s children five and under had elevated blood lead–a percentage almost double that seen before the switch to the Flint River water.

Keep reading here.

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Filed under Environmental Ethics, environmental justice, Equity, politics, Urban Ecology

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