What is the Water Quality in Baytown, Texas?
Compared to other US cities, Baytown water quality ranks in the middle range for contamination excluding Lead.
Most of their 29 contaminants have cancer-causing attributes.
- Chloroform is at very high levels: 63x health guidelines.
- Haloacetic acids (HAA5) are at extremely high levels: 113x health guidelines.
- Haloacetic acids (HAA9) are at extremely high levels: 339x health guidelines.
- These are both byproducts of the chlorine treatment process most water supplies go through.
- Radium is at very high levels: 30x health guidelines.
Let’s look closer at what’s in Baytown water.
What’s in Baytown water?
Here are the top 5 chemical compounds in Baytown water and what health issues they can potentially cause:
- Bromodichloromethane – Potential effect: Cancer
- Chloroform – Potential effect: Cancer
- Haloacetic acids – Potential effect: Cancer
- Hexavalent Chromium – Potential effect: Cancer
- Total trihalomethanes – Potential effect: Cancer
These are five of the 29 contaminants analyzed by the Environmental Working Group (ewg.org).
14 of these contaminants are rated as exceeding EWG Health Guidelines.
Does Baytown water have Lead contamination?
Yes, Baytown has lead in its water. The most recent Lead samples collected in 2018 showed concentrations up to 2.7 parts per billion (ppb).
The legal limit for lead is 15 parts per billion. Being well-below this level is a good thing.
- Concentrations between 3.8 ppb and 15 ppb put a formula-fed baby at risk of elevated blood lead levels. Read more about the symptoms of Lead in water.
There is no safe level of lead for humans.
- The good news is that 99.99% of the lead can be removed.
See the What Can You Do? section below to learn how to filter out contaminants.
Where does Baytown’s water come from?
Baytown’s water comes from the Goose Creek – Frontal Galveston Bay watershed.
9 of the 11 EPA assessed water sources in the Goose Creek – Frontal Galveston Bay watershed are in Impaired condition. These include:
- Barbours Cut
- Black Duck Bay
- Burnet Bay
- Crystal Bay
- Houston Ship Channel
- San Jacinto Bay
- Scott Bay
- Tabbs Bay
Ideally, a water source would be rated in Good condition. Two sections of Goose Creek are in Good condition.
Whether a water source is in Impaired or Good condition refers to the quality of these uses:
- Drinking Water
- Aquatic Life
- Fish and Shellfish Consumption
Learn more from How’s My Waterway
See below for what you can do to improve Baytown’s water.
What Can You Do?
Information about water quality in Baytown can be surprising.
But there are things you can do in your home to clean up your water.
To Remove Lead and Other Contaminants In Your Home:
There is one solution that beats Brita, PUR, and some whole house systems.
- It costs less per gallon.
- Needs fewer filter changes.
- And it doesn’t make your water taste weird.
- Use Berkey filters with activated carbon to filter out the majority of contaminants in your drinking water.
- Berkey filters can also remove up to 99.99% of Lead in Baytown water.
- Brita can filter 17 contaminants and Lead depending on the filter.
- Note: We may receive a commission if you decide to purchase filters through links on this page.
- To filter out 27 of the 29 contaminants, consider a Reverse Osmosis water filtration system for your house.
- These are more expensive than pitchers to purchase, but can be more effective.
- They have the benefit of filtering out heavy hitters like:
- Atrazine – herbicide
- Barium – health risks in water
- Bromodichloromethane – health risks in drinking water
- Chloroform – side effects
- Chromium (total)
- Cyanide – exposure limits
- Haloacetic acids – chlorination byproduct*
- Hexavalent chromium – health effects
- Simazine – toxicity
- Total trihalomethanes – byproduct of chlorination*
- Trichloroacetic acid
*Chlorination is an effective method of disinfecting/treating drinking water. You can then use a water filter to reduce the effects of chlorination byproducts to get the safest, cleanest water possible.
In Your Community:
Contact your local government officials and put pressure on them to invest in cleaner waterways and upgraded city water filtration and treatment.
Go to: http://www.baytown.org/ to find contact information for your local officials.