Atrazine Is Still Widely Used in The US
The herbicide atrazine is a fairly common ingredient of city tap water in the United States. Atrazine is banned in the European Union, but corporate-friendly US regulating agencies still allow it to be used.
Atrazine is one of the regulated chemicals that cities have most difficulty keeping within the EPA required limits.
The Huffington Post recently reported that the Environmental Protection Agency has failed to notify the public about data showing that atrazine has been found at levels above the federal safety limit in drinking water in at least four states. Atrazine has been studied for its potential link to breast cancer, prostate cancer, and birth defects, and the EPA considers it to be a potential endocrine disruptor.
Removing atrazine is a costly undertaking for cities, requiring expensive carbon filtration equipment. To recover the cost of filtering atrazine, water companies in six states are preparing a lawsuit against the makers of atrazine, the Swiss company Syngenta. (Lots of luck.)
The case of atrazine and other herbicides clearly underlines the need for point of use treatment. Atrazine can be removed with relative ease with a high quality carbon drinking water filter, but it is very expensive for city water suppliers to provide high quality carbon filtration for water that is going to flush toilets and water golf courses.