Uh-oh, citizens of Midland. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) has notified the City of Midland Water Purification Plant that the drinking water being supplied to regional customers has exceeded the Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) for arsenic. WHAT???

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has established the MCL for arsenic to be 0.010 milligrams per liter (mg/L) based on the running annual average (RAA), and they have determined that it is a health concern at levels above the MCL. Further analysis of drinking water in Midland for arsenic has indicated a compliance value in the fourth quarter of 2023 of 0.011 mg/L for EP004.

They say this is not an emergency. However, some people who drink water containing arsenic over the MCL across many years could experience skin damage, problems with their circulatory system, and may have an increased risk of cancer.

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The City of Midland says you do not need to use an alternative water supply. Symptoms of arsenic poisoning may include nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, and chest pain. If you have health concerns, talk to your doctor for more information about how this may affect you. By the way, boiling the water does not remove the arsenic. However, some water filters like Brita can help remove it.

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The city is taking the following actions to address this issue:

  • Better blending of water sources
  • Piloting a new treatment technique to remove the arsenic

Please share this information with folks who drink water from the City of Midland, especially those who may not have received this notice (example; people in apartments, nursing homes, schools, and businesses).

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