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Order amid Chaos

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USA Flag
July 2002

The facts and opinions expressed are those of Bruce Anderson

Governor's Volunteer Awards 2002
Toms River, New Jersey

The Citizen's Action Committee for the Childhood Cancer Cluster members recieved the Governor's Volunteer Award recently for the tremendious impact they have made on the protection of the citizens and children of Toms River.

"In March 1996, over 1000 citizens attended a public meeting to express their outrage and concern over the high rate of cancer in Toms River, New Jersey.

As a result of this meeting, the New Jersey Department of Health formed a volunteer group and charged them with providing the public with timely and honest information about the investigation and to ensure that the government agencies serve the public interest.

Since itsinception, this volunteer committee of Toms River citizens has made a tremdous impact on the protection of the citizens and children of Toms River.

These dedicated volunteers spend countless hours protecting the citizens of Toms River from further enviromental hazards by reviewing past environmental practices that could be linked to the high incidence of childhood cancer. They also attended meetings, both locally and regionally, in an effort to understand and lead the investigation into this area.

Despite concern of the business community, local, county and state governments on the impact on its research and findings, the committee performed its task at hand undiminished.

From meetings on TICs(Tentatively Identified Compounds) found in the drinking water to "trimer" testing criterias, volunteers spearheaded effects requesting additional filters for the drinking water even when pressure was applied to end the investigation.

Today, CACCCC continues its mission, providing the research and facts on the potential association between environmential contamination and the elevated cancer rate in Toms River, thus leading the way to a safer environment."



Consumer Confidence Report 2001

What our drinking water report
fails to tell you


Yes our drinking water meets the EPA Safe Drinking Water Standards but these standards were first created in 1974 by Congress. To say the least they are outdated. What they fail to inform you of is these standards are based on a healthy 150 pound adult male drinking 2 liters of water each day throughtout a 70-year life span, not children, not the elderly nor anyone suffering from any health condition.

The following "Health Note" is contained in these reports,

"Drinking water, including bottled water, may reasonably be expected to contain at least small amounts of some contaminants. The presence of contaminants does not necessarily indicate that the water poses a health risk. More information about contaminants and potential health effects can be obtained by calling the EPA Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 800-426-4791.

Some people may be more vulnerable to contaminants in drinking water than the general population. Immuno-compromised persons, such as persons wuth cancer undergoing chemotherapy, persons who have undergone organ transplants, people with HIV/AIDS or other immune system disorders, some elderly, and infants can be particularly at risk from infections. These people should seek advice about drinking water from their health care providers. EPA/CDC guidelines on appropriate means to lesson the risk of infections by cryptosporidium and other micobial contaminants are available from the Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 800-426-4791."

The standard water test being performed only looks for 83 chemicals (some requirements for sampling can be waived) out of the thousands that are produced. One would think that when a superfund site impacts a well field, government agencies would require sampling for all chemicals dumped on that superfund site.


Toms River, NJ
Consumer Confidence Report 2001


Below is a comparision of those chart sections that match from year to year to this just released report year 2001. Year 2001 values are highlighted in yellow.

Below each section is the potential health effects (in orange) if the Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) were to be exceeded thus showing why sampling for these chemicals is important.


Inorganic Chemicals

Substance
Type and Name

EPA
MCLG

EPA
MCL

UWTR
Highest

UWTR
Range

Likely
Source

Fluoride ppm
1998

4

4

0.2

ND to 0.2

Natural
deposits

Fluoride ppm
2000

4

4

.6

ND-.6

Natural
deposits

Fluoride ppm
2001

4

4

.1 (2000)

ND-.1 (2000)

Natural
deposits

Nitrate
ppm
(1998)

10

10

0.8

ND to 0.8

Natural
deposits

Nitrate
ppm
(2000)

10

10

1.2

ND-1.2

Natural
deposits

Nitrate
ppm
2001

10

10

1.5

.5 to 1.5

Natural
deposits



Our standards for drinking water are totally inadequate to say the least. Out of the thousands of chemicals produced, Toms River sampled for eighty one in our drinking water, even if other chemicals were potentially impacting the water source.
These inorganic chemicals are sampled at the point of entry to the United Water system.

Floride; "Potential health effects from exposure above MCL, Bone disease (pain and tenderness of the bones); Children may get mottled teeth."
Nitrate (measured as Nitrogen); "Potential health effects from exposure above MCL, Infants below the age of six months who drink water containing nitrate in excess of the MCL could become seriously ill and, if untreated, may die. Symptoms include shortness of breath and blue-baby syndome."



....Radionuclides:

Substance
Type and Name

EPA
MCLG

EPA
MCL

UWTR
Highest

UWTR
Range

Likely
Source

Alpha emitters
pCi/L
1998

0

15

10

6 to 10

Natural
deposits

Alpha emitters
pCi/L
2000

0

15

15

6.2-15

Natural
deposits

Alpha emitters
pCi/L
2001

0

15

8.2

6.2-8.2

Natural
deposits

Radon
pCi/L
1998

none

none

160

N/A

Natural
deposits

Radon
pCi/L
2000

none

none

160

N/A

Natural
deposits

Radon
pCi/L
2001

none

none

130

N/A

Natural
deposits

Combined Radon (2000)
pCi/L

0

5

5.5 (2000)

.5-5.5(2000)

Natural
deposits

Combined Radon (2001)
pCi/L

0

5

2.6

.5-2.6

Natural
deposits



Radionuclides are sampled downstream of the well heads. This is called blending. The water from several wells dilute the over all concentration, so the radioactivity is reduced. Concerns have been raised over this sampling method. Higher concentrations have been reported at some well heads.
Alpha emitters, Radon, Combined Radon; "Potential health effects from exposure above MCL: Increase risk of cancer."


...Volatile:

Substance
Type and Name

EPA
MCLG

EPA
MCL

UWTR
Highest

UWTR
Range

Likely
Source

TTHMs ppb

0

100

7.5 (1998)
4.9 (2000)

ND to 7.5 (1998)
.7-4.9 (2000)

Treatment
byproduct



TTHMS are byproducts of the chemical disinfection of drinking water. This sample is taken at the furthest point in the system, somewhere in the area of Green Island, Toms River.
TTHMS; "Potential health effects from exposure above MCL:
"Liver, kidney or central nervous system problems; increase risk of cancer."



Lead and copper:

Substance
Type and Name

EPA
MCLG

EPA
MCL

90th
Percentile

Samples
Above AL

Likely
Source

Lead ppb

0

15

3 (1998)
.004 (2000)

0 to 10 (1998)
0 (2000)

Household
plumbing

Copper
ppm

1.3

1.3

0.2 (1998)
.3 (2000)

0 (1998)
1 (2000)

Household
plumbing



This sample is taken at several homes that have been recently constructed, thus the "likely source", household plumbing. It is questionable how sampling several homes could be representative of the Township's drinking water.
"LEAD", "Potential health effects from exposure above MCL;
Infants & Children: Delays in physical or mental development; children could show slight deficits in attention span and learning abilities
Adults: Kidney problems, high blood pressure"
"Copper", "Potential health effects from exposure above MCL;
Short term exposure: Gastrointestinal distress,
Long term exposure: Liver or kidney damage
People with Wilson's Disease should consult their personal doctor if the amount of copper in their water exceeds the action level"




  • Several important meetings are scheduled, for further details look under "Local Events" on the sidebar or click on this link.
  • The previous cover page can be found under "RESOURCES", Previous Month's Cover Pages.