: News

Filed Under:

Report On CDC Has D.C. Residents Looking For More Answers On Lead Contamination

Play associated audio
William Walker (left), chairman of D.C.'s Water and Sewer Authority's board of directors, along with WASA's new General Manager George Hawkins (right), have won praise from some residents.
Jonathan Wilson
William Walker (left), chairman of D.C.'s Water and Sewer Authority's board of directors, along with WASA's new General Manager George Hawkins (right), have won praise from some residents.

By Jonathan Wilson

D.C.'s Water and Sewer Authority says the city's drinking water has been safe since a spike in lead levels detected in 2004. But a congressional report questioning lead analysis by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has some residents asking for more answers.

The safe lead level designated by the Environmental Protection Agency is 15 parts per billion.

WASA chief George Hawkins says D.C. levels have been well below that since 2004.

"We've changed the chemistry of the water, that reduces the amount of lead leaching into the water, which is why we're getting low numbers," says Hawkins.

But Hawkins says there are still many lead lines in the District, and that can mean high levels for certain customers. WASA provides free testing for homeowners who want their water evaluated.

Yanna Lambrinidou, president of a parent group formed in response to the lead crisis, says there are still questions residents want answered, and since trust in the CDC may be eroding, D.C. agencies have an opportunity.

"Set the record straight for us here in D.C., and we can finally start getting correct public health messages," says Lambrinidou.

The city's Department of Environment has plans for another lead study, but says it doesn't have the funding to complete it.

NPR

A Love Letter To Literature: Reading Gabo In 'The Paris Review'

Gabriel Garcia Marquez died Thursday. It would be hard to overstate the importance of his novels, but author Gustavo Arellano recommends getting to know him in a different medium.
NPR

In The Land Of Razor Clams, Dinner Hides Deep Within The Sand

Clam digging satisfies that primeval urge to go out into nature and find free food. And inveterate Washington state clam diggers admit they compete to get their daily limit of 15 clams.
NPR

Are Democrats Trying To Energize The Base With The Race Card?

Top Democrats have said recently that some GOP opposition to President Obama and his agenda is based on race. It's an explosive message that might drive Democratic voters to the polls.
NPR

Should College Dropouts Be Honored By Their Alma Maters?

From a Top Gun sequel starring drones to Howard University's pick of Puff Daddy as its commencement speaker, the Barbershop guys weigh in on the week's news.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.