"California Sets Goal for Limiting Drinking Water Pollutant"

"The California Environmental Protection Agency has issued the nation's first public health goal for hexavalent chromium, the cancer-causing heavy metal made infamous after activist Erin Brockovich sued in 1993 over contaminated groundwater in the Mojave Desert town of Hinkley, about 100 miles northeast of Los Angeles.

At that time, the average hexavalent chromium level in Hinkley's water was 1.19 parts per billion (ppb). The new state goal was set Wednesday at 0.02 ppb, the level of the element that does not pose a significant health risk in drinking water, according to state officials.

That means for every million people who drink tap water with that level of hexavalent chromium every day for 70 years, there would likely be one additional case of cancer attributable to exposure to the metal, state officials said."

Molly Hennessy-Fiske reports for the Los Angeles Times July 30, 2011.

Source: LA Times, 08/01/2011