Although states have made recent and valiant attempts at cleaning up their water, there are still some that struggle with water pollution.
It seems Nebraska is one of the worst, with 23% of their community water systems recorded as having water safety violations and 11% of their state population served by contaminated water sources.
Although only 10% of Maryland’s community water systems have reported health violations, more than 30% (33%) of their overall population is served by contaminated water sources.
According to AOL Health, California, Wisconsin, and North Carolina top the list for the most toxic tap water. As far as specific cities go, Pensacola, FL, Riverside, CA, and Las Vegas, NV have the worst water quality. Neither of the articles stated what caused these places to be ranked so poor, however, they both did cite their sources.
I have no objective data/study to back this up, but West Virginia has a lot of issues with water due to the coal mining industry and a lot of it goes unchecked because the mine owners have a great deal of lobby power and political sway. West Virginia is big coal mining land; part of coal mining is cleaning the coal which ends up making a sludge waste product some of which has concentrations of 1000% more arsenic and lead than the EPA deems fit . The mining companies have to dispose of it somehow so it gets stuck into old mine shafts or lagoons. We’re talking about billions and billions of gallons of this sludge over the course of 5-10 years. It ends up getting seeping into local water bodies and water supplies and is believed to be responsible for the unusually high rates of gallbladder disease, thyroid and kidney issues, and miscarriages in some West Virginia communities. Some residents have to even use bottled water to bathe and brush their teeth, because the local tap water causes tooth decay and rashes.
The midwest is experiencing some startling water pollution due to natural gas drilling. The link below will take you to a video of a man lighting his tap water o fire because it has so many flammable chemicals that were pumped into groundwater due to fracking.
There are several different ways of addressing this, which state has the worst water quality for municipal use? or which state has the worst water quality in natural sources? The previous answers for tap water quality have touched on that topic pretty well; however from a natural source standpoint, Ohio and Louisiana have some of the most polluted water in the country.
Much of the water in Louisiana is connected to the Gulf of Mexico. Due in large part to agricultural run-off from the Mississippi river, most major water sources are heavily polluted in Louisiana. And, of course, catastrophic oil spills aren’t good for water quality either.
Ohio boarders Lake Erie which has high levels of industrial pollutants from coal mining in the region, also, Lake Erie has received a lot of point source sewage from bordering towns and states. Ohio has the second most polluted beaches in the country, only losing out to Louisiana.
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