Drinking Water: How Much Rocket Fuel is Safe for Humans?
ETV | January 11, 2005
The Bush Administration appears to be making an attempt to allow more percholorate, a type of chemical found in rocket fuel, in our drinking water. The goal: to prevent a costly cleanup for military and aerospace companies.
The Pentagon has asked the National Academy of Sciences to create a panal to review how much percholorate is safe in drinking water. The Environmental Protection Agency had previously ruled that there should be no more than 1 part per billion of percholorate in drinking water to protect public safety. The Academy is trying to have that number increased to 20 times that amount.
Percholorate affects the hormone level in the thyroid gland. According to some studies, even small amounts of the substance can affect the brain development of small children. The affect is even greater if the water is ingested by pregnant women.
The Bush Administration was eager to side with the findings of the Academy and allow higher levels of percholorate in drinking water. 'We respect the (Academy) recommendations,' says Bob Hopkins of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. 'We will work with the agencies ... on how best to incorporate these findings into (regulatory) action.'
Environmental groups charge that 'The Academy was in a one-sided dialogue with just the industry folks and the Pentagon,' says Erik Olson of the Natural Resources Defense Council.
The final decision of the government has yet to be determined but all indications are that Americans will soon be drinking more chemicals in their water.