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Brain damaged children: Water that meets federal heavy metals limit is still not safe to drink

Water contamination

(NaturalNews) Millions of Americans have long known that though there might be a federal agency that is supposed to oversee and regulate certain activities within the country, such oversight is often done poorly, improperly and inefficiently.

Take as an example the Environmental Protection Agency. This is one government entity that, even when its rules and standards are being met, still does not provide adequate public safety and health protection for citizens.

A case in point is the contaminated water disaster in the city of Flint, Michigan, recently. You may recall the recent scandal there involving toxic levels of lead in the drinking water. Long story short, state environmental officials, Flint city officials and the EPA all knew that the water was toxic, but the latter – the agency with supreme power over the situation – failed to act, and as a result, scores of children now have to worry about brain damage later in life thanks to all of the lead they ingested.

Now, according to Russian Times, water in Flint meets federal standards set by the EPA, but it still contains toxins, including lead, that are unsafe because the water cannot be drunk without some further filtration and cleansing.

Another worthless federal agency

In recent days, researchers from Virginia Tech University announced that in their most recent round of testing of Flint water last month, 45 percent of the city's homes had levels of lead below the 15 parts per billion (ppb) threshold, which was up from only 9 percent of homes a year ago.

"This really shows that the corrosion control and all the other things implemented by the feds, the state and the city are really working," Virginia Tech professor, Marc Edwards, who led the study, said in a press conference. "Flint's system is on its way to recovery."

Hold on ... is it?

Despite the "improvements" made to water quality, officials say that water in the city is still not safe to drink without using a filter. So, in reality, not much has changed.

It should surprise no one that the EPA funded the Virginia Tech study, so naturally its authors had to crow about something to make the agency that dropped the ball in Flint big time look better. But it's akin to putting lipstick on a pig.

What's more, the study was just a random sampling and did not focus on "high-risk" areas of the city – all of which means that residents are still better off disinfecting water on their own.

City trying to save money didn't bother to adequately protect citizens

"Homeowners in Flint should continue to follow the state and EPA's advice of using their lead filters and continuing to drink bottled water," Virginia Tech Ph.D. student Kelsey Pieper said, as reported by PBS.

VT researchers found Flint's water supply to be contaminated with lead last year; the resulting scandal made national headlines, and one EPA regional director resigned – but was not forced out. Nor did the agency ever really take responsibility for its inaction.

Now, more than a year later, the water in Flint is being touted as "good to go" but it really isn't. And what's worse, it appears as though the most contaminated regions of the economically depressed city aren't even being counted in the "average" of homes tested.

This entire ordeal stems from a failure of government at the local level as well. City officials in Flint chose to switch water sources to the local (contaminated) Flint River in April 2014, instead of continuing to buy it from more reliable sources in Detroit as a money-saving effort. But in doing so, the city failed to ensure that the water it had switched to was properly decontaminated.

And the EPA essentially let it happen.





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