Jan 31, 2018

Alabama Health Officials Rebuff Water Quality Concerns

Warriors for Clean Water argues that the Tennessee River is contaminated with PFOS and PFOA

Alabama investigates water quality

An advocacy group called Warriors for Clean Water have claimed that there is an increase in kidney and renal cancer in Morgan and Lawrence County, Ala., related to drinking water quality from the Tennessee River. The Alabama Department of Public Health, however, argues they have not seen a spike in cancer cases and that the water quality is well within federal standards.

The advocacy group points to the emerging contaminants of PFOS and PFOA as the source of the alleged problem. Officials with the Department of Public Health assert that there is not an increased quantity of the contaminants in the drinking water source. 

“We’ve looked at north Alabama more than once, and again, even in the past week since all of this has come up. In fact, the types of renal or kidney related cancers that have been mentioned in the news are not more common in folks living along the Tennessee River or using those waters,” said Dr. Scott Harris, state health officer for the Department of Public Health. “I’m not really sure what data they collected that led them to those conclusions.” 

Officials are unclear where the Warriors for Clean Water have gathered their information and assert that they have not seen the same evidence the group suggests.