2,317 systems serving 17,300,092 people
  This drinking water quality report shows results of tests conducted by water utilities in New York, provided to the Environmental Working Group (EWG) by the New York Department of Health- Bureau of Public Water Supply Protection. It is part of EWG's national database that includes 47,667 drinking water utilities and 20 million test results from 45 states and the District of Columbia. Water utilities nationwide detected more than 300 pollutants between 2004 and 2009. More than half of these chemicals are unregulated, legal in any amount. Despite this widespread contamination, the federal government invests few resources in protecting rivers, reservoirs, and groundwater from pollution in the first place. The information below summarizes drinking water quality for this state.

Water Utilities
Population Served
Detected Chemicals
Exceed health guidelines*
Exceed Legal Limits*
Unregulated chemicals detected
* Water utilities are noted as exceeding the legal limit if any test is above the maximum contaminant level (MCL). Most MCLs are based on annual averages so exceeding the MCL for one test does not necessarily indicate that the system is out of compliance.

  85 Contaminants Exceeding Health Based Limits

Contaminants detected in New York drinking water above health guidelines, according to an Environmental Working Group analysis of data obtained from state water authorities.

Number of Systems
At Any Level Above Health Limits At Any Level Above Health Limits
Bromodichloromethane 15,578,707 15,578,707 1,615 1,615
Total haloacetic acids (HAAs) 15,499,664 15,437,803 1,316 1,301
Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs) 16,579,302 15,207,047 1,825 1,052
Dichloroacetic acid 14,219,197 14,219,197 1,154 1,154
Chloroform 15,781,998 14,134,699 1,612 817
Trichloroacetic acid 13,913,529 10,318,500 1,002 273
Lead (total) 9,395,234 9,395,234 229 229
Dibromochloromethane 15,027,580 8,244,891 1,543 1,527
Bromoform 5,558,017 5,558,017 914 914
Radium-228 4,109,220 4,109,220 1,169 1,169

  Sources of New York Drinking Water Contaminants

The contaminants identified in New York drinking water come from a wide variety of sources, including agriculture, industry, water treatment plants, and polluted storm runoff from urban areas..

181 Total Contaminants Detected (2004 - 2009)
53 Agricultural Pollutants
(pesticides, fertilizer, factory farms)

Nitrate, Nitrate & nitrite, Arsenic (total), Selenium (total), Nitrite, Perchlorate, 1,2-Dibromo-3-chloropropane (DBCP), Atrazine, Ethylbenzene, Dalapon, Cyanide, Simazine, Chlorate, Ethylene dibromide (EDB), 1,2-Dichloropropane, Dacthal, Metolachlor, p-Dichlorobenzene, DCPA di acid degradate, Phosphorus, 2,4-D, Bromomethane, Heptachlor epoxide, Monochlorobenzene (Chlorobenzene), o-Dichlorobenzene, Chlordane, Alachlor (Lasso), Lindane, Picloram, Dieldrin, Dinoseb, Dicamba, Toxaphene, Oxamyl (Vydate), 2,4,5-TP (Silvex), Methoxychlor, 3-Hydroxycarbofuran, Endrin, Aldicarb sulfoxide, Heptachlor, Carbofuran, Methomyl, m-Dichlorobenzene, Aldicarb, Carbaryl, Metribuzin, Aldicarb sulfone, Aldrin, Propachlor, DCPA mono acid degradate, Butachlor, Mirex, beta-Lindane

50 Sprawl and Urban Pollutants
(road runoff, lawn pesticides, human waste)

Nitrate, Copper, Nitrate & nitrite, Lead (total), Arsenic (total), Tetrachloroethylene, MTBE, Nitrite, Xylenes (total), Dalapon, Cadmium (total), Antimony (total), Mercury (total inorganic), m- & p- Xylene, Dichloromethane (methylene chloride), Cyanide, o-Xylene, Benzene, Acetone, Molybdenum, Silver (total), Trichlorofluoromethane, Dacthal, p-Dichlorobenzene, DCPA di acid degradate, Methyl ethyl ketone, Di(2-Ethylhexyl) adipate, Phosphorus, Lithium, Hydrogen sulfide, 2,4-D, Naphthalene, p-Xylene, m-Xylene, Chlordane, Benzo[a]pyrene, Trichlorotrifluoroethane, Lindane, bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, n-Propylbenzene, 2,4,5-TP (Silvex), Tin (total), Bromobenzene, Carbaryl, tert-Butylbenzene, sec-Butylbenzene, DCPA mono acid degradate, Dichlorobenzenes (total), Strontium-89, beta-Lindane

122 Industrial Pollutants

Aluminum, Bromide, Arsenic (total), Chlorate, Chlorite, Barium (total), Cadmium (total), Chromium (total), Cyanide, Hydrogen sulfide, Lead (total), Manganese, Mercury (total inorganic), Nitrate & nitrite, Nitrate, Nitrite, Selenium (total), Silver (total), Strontium, Antimony (total), Beryllium (total), Lithium, Molybdenum, Thallium (total), Tin (total), Titanium, Phosphorus, Asbestos, Lindane, p-Isopropyltoluene, Di(2-Ethylhexyl) adipate, Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, Hexachlorocyclopentadiene, Chloromethane, Dichlorodifluoromethane, Chloroethane, Trichlorofluoromethane, trans-1,3-Dichloropropene, cis-1,3-Dichloropropene, Acetone, Hexachlorobutadiene, Methyl ethyl ketone, Naphthalene, MTBE, Isophorone, Hexachlorobenzene (HCB), bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, Pentachlorophenol, 1,2,4-Trichlorobenzene, cis-1,2-Dichloroethylene, Total polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), Aroclor 1221, Aroclor 1242, Aroclor 1254, PCB 1262, Dichlorobenzenes (total), Dibromomethane, 1,1-Dichloropropene, 1,3-Dichloropropane, 1,2,3-Trichloropropane, 2,2-Dichloropropane, 1,2,4-Trimethylbenzene, 1,2,3-Trichlorobenzene, n-Butylbenzene, 1,3,5-Trimethylbenzene, tert-Butylbenzene, sec-Butylbenzene, Bromochloromethane, Methane, Trichlorotrifluoroethane, Ethylene dibromide (EDB), Xylenes (total), p-Xylene, Dichloromethane (methylene chloride), o-Chlorotoluene, p-Chlorotoluene, m-Dichlorobenzene, p-Dichlorobenzene, Vinyl chloride, 1,1-Dichloroethylene, 1,1-Dichloroethane, trans-1,2-Dichloroethylene, 1,2-Dichloroethane, 1,1,1-Trichloroethane, Carbon tetrachloride, 1,2-Dichloropropane, Trichloroethylene, 1,1,2-Trichloroethane, 1,1,1,2-Tetrachloroethane, Tetrachloroethylene, 1,1,2,2-Tetrachloroethane, Monochlorobenzene (Chlorobenzene), Benzene, Toluene, Ethylbenzene, Bromobenzene, Isopropylbenzene, m-Xylene, Styrene, o-Xylene, n-Propylbenzene, m- & p- Xylene, Alpha particle activity (excl radon and uranium), Alpha particle activity (incl. radon & uranium), Combined Uranium (mg/L), Uranium-234, Uranium-238, Combined Radium (-226 & -228), Radium-226, Radium-228, Alpha, Dissolved, Alpha particle activity (suspended), Gross beta particle activity (dissolved), Gross beta particle activity (suspended), Potassium-40 (total), Tritium, Alpha particle activity, Cesium-134, Perchlorate, Chlorodifluoromethane, Combined Uranium (pCi/L), Gross beta particle activity (pCi/L)

27 Water Treatment and Distribution Byproducts
(pipes and fixtures, treatment chemicals and byproducts)

Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs), Total haloacetic acids (HAAs), Chloroform, Bromodichloromethane, Dibromochloromethane, Dichloroacetic acid, Trichloroacetic acid, Bromoform, Dibromoacetic acid, Monochloroacetic acid, Bromochloroacetic acid, Monobromoacetic acid, Chlorite, Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, Bromodichloroacetic acid, Cadmium (total), Chloromethane, Chlorate, Vinyl chloride, Asbestos, Dibromomethane, Bromochloromethane, Benzo[a]pyrene, Chloroethane, Chlorodibromoacetic acid, m-Dichlorobenzene, Tribromoacetic acid

40 Naturally Occurring
(naturally present but increased for lands denuded by sprawl, agriculture, or industrial development)

Nitrate, Copper, Nitrate & nitrite, Barium (total), Lead (total), Arsenic (total), Manganese, Radium-228, Radium-226, Alpha particle activity, Alpha particle activity (excl radon and uranium), Combined Radium (-226 & -228), Gross beta particle activity (pCi/L), Combined Uranium (pCi/L), Chromium (total), Alpha particle activity (incl. radon & uranium), Combined Uranium (mg/L), Aluminum, Selenium (total), Nitrite, Radon, Bromide, Mercury (total inorganic), Chloromethane, Cyanide, Uranium-238, Uranium-234, Silver (total), Phosphorus, Lithium, Hydrogen sulfide, Alpha, Dissolved, Gross beta particle activity (dissolved), Tin (total), Titanium, Potassium-40 (total), Gross beta particle activity (suspended), Cesium-134, Alpha particle activity (suspended), Manganese, Dissolved

83 Unregulated Contaminants
EPA has not established a maximum legal limit in tapwater for these contaminants

Bromide, Chlorate, Hydrogen sulfide, Lead (total), Manganese, Dissolved, Strontium, Lithium, Molybdenum, Tin (total), Titanium, Phosphorus, Carbaryl, Methomyl, p-Isopropyltoluene, Aldicarb sulfoxide, Aldicarb sulfone, Metolachlor, Aldicarb, 3-Hydroxycarbofuran, Dieldrin, Butachlor, Propachlor, Dacthal, DCPA mono acid degradate, DCPA di acid degradate, Chloromethane, Dichlorodifluoromethane, Bromomethane, Chloroethane, Trichlorofluoromethane, trans-1,3-Dichloropropene, cis-1,3-Dichloropropene, Acetone, Hexachlorobutadiene, Methyl ethyl ketone, Naphthalene, MTBE, Isophorone, bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, beta-Lindane, Aldrin, PCB 1262, Dichlorobenzenes (total), Dibromomethane, 1,1-Dichloropropene, 1,3-Dichloropropane, 1,2,3-Trichloropropane, 2,2-Dichloropropane, 1,2,4-Trimethylbenzene, 1,2,3-Trichlorobenzene, n-Butylbenzene, 1,3,5-Trimethylbenzene, tert-Butylbenzene, sec-Butylbenzene, Bromochloromethane, Dicamba, Methane, Bromochloroacetic acid, Metribuzin, Trichlorotrifluoroethane, Mirex, o-Chlorotoluene, p-Chlorotoluene, m-Dichlorobenzene, 1,1-Dichloroethane, 1,1,1,2-Tetrachloroethane, 1,1,2,2-Tetrachloroethane, Bromobenzene, Isopropylbenzene, n-Propylbenzene, Radon, Alpha, Dissolved, Potassium-40 (total), Tritium, Strontium-89, Cesium-134, Perchlorate, Bromodichloroacetic acid, Chlorodibromoacetic acid, Tribromoacetic acid, Chlorodifluoromethane, Uranium-234 (pCi/L), Uranium-238 (pCi/L)

  Testing Summary for New York

The federal government has set standards for some of the pollutants found in tap water supplies.

Contaminants reported as tested by water suppliers in New York 298
  Contaminants tested due to federal law: 106
  Contaminants tested in addition to those required by federal law: 192
  Violation Summary for New York

Data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency includes the following violations of federal standards in New York since 2004.

Violation Type Number of Violations
Failure to monitor regularly 16,477
Operations Report 2,269
Failure to monitor, Routine Major (Coliform bacteria) 1,274
Monitoring and Reporting Disinfection Byproduct Rule 974
Over maximum contaminant level, Average 805
Follow-up and Routine Tap Sampling 620
Failure to report information to the public or state agency in the Consumer Confidence Report 470
Maximum contaminant level, Monthly (Coliform bacteria) 186
Inadequate reporting of information to the public 164
Over maximum contaminant level, Single Sample 115
Treatment Technique No Certif. Operator 104
State Assigned Maximum Permissible Level Non-Compliance 91
Failure to monitor, Routine Minor (Coliform bacteria) 86
Excess Turbidity at 0.3 NTU 82
Improper Treatment Techniques 74
Failure to Filter (Surface Water Treatment Rule) 68
Maximum contaminant level, Acute (Coliform bacteria) 60
Record Keeping Violation 59
Initial Tap Sampling for Lead and Copper 53
Initial Water Quality Parameter Monitoring and Reporting 36
Excess Turbidity at 1 NTU 30
Failure to monitor, Repeat Minor (Coliform bacteria) 28
Filter Turbidity Reporting 27
Failure to monitor or report, Routine/Repeat (Indicators of microbial or virus contamination) 24
Failure to notify state agency 17
Failure to monitor, Repeat Major (Coliform bacteria) 16
Treatment Technique Precursor Removal 14
Treatment Technique (Surface Water Treatment Rule) 11
Optimal Corrosion Control Treatment Study Recommendation 10
Failure to notify public of violation 9
Public Education 8
Public Notification Violation for National Primary Drinking Water Regulations 7
Failure to monitor: Check/Repeat/Confirmation sampling 6
Non-Acute maximum residual disinfectant level 3
Optimal Corrosion Control Treatment Installation/Demonstration 2
Initial, Follow-up, or Routine Source Water Treatment Monitoring and Reporting 2
Variance/Exemption/Other Compliance 1
Treatment Technique Uncovered Reservoir 1
Other Non-National Primary Drinking Water Regulations Potential Health Risks 1
Water Quality Program Entry Point Non-Compliance 1
Treatment Technique w/o State Prior Approval 1
Failure to monitor or report, Routine/Repeat (Indicators of microbial or virus contamination) 1

Sources : EWG (Environmental Working Group)