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Home > By DEPARTMENTS > Green Operations > Standard Operating Procedures for Green and Sustainable Business Operations > Water Efficiency

EPA Makes Preliminary Determination to Regulate Strontium in Drinking Water

Strontium is used as strontium carbonate in pyrotechnics, in steel production, as a catalyst and as a lead scavenger.

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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has made a preliminary determination to regulate strontium in the nation's drinking water. Strontium is a naturally occurring element that, at elevated levels, can impact bone strength in people who do not consume enough calcium.

Strontium is used as strontium carbonate in pyrotechnics, in steel production, as a catalyst and as a lead scavenger.

A regulatory determination is a formal decision on whether EPA should initiate a rulemaking process to regulate a specific contaminant. The Safe Drinking Water Act requires that every five years, EPA develop a contaminant candidate list and then make a regulatory determination for at least five contaminants on the list.

Based on available information, the agency has initially determined that strontium has adverse health effects. Strontium replaces calcium in bone, affecting skeletal development. Although strontium affects all life stages, infants, children, and adolescents are of particular concern because their bones are developing. Strontium has been detected in 99 percent of public water systems and at levels of concern in 7 percent of public water systems in the country.

For more information check with the EPA's work on water quality: EPA Contaminants



Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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