Water Quality in Burbank, California
Watershed: Tujunga Wash – Los Angeles River
What is the water quality like in Burbank, CA?
Let’s dive deeper into what’s in Burbank water.
What’s in Burbank water?
Here are the top 5 chemical compounds in your water and what health issues they can potentially cause:
- Bromodichloromethane – Potential effect: Cancer
- Chloroform – Potential effect: Cancer
- Hexavalent Chromium – Potential effect: Cancer
- Nitrate – Potential effect: Cancer
- Total trihalomethanes – Potential effect: Cancer
These are five of the 18 contaminants analyzed by the Environmental Working Group (ewg.org).
9 of these contaminants are rated as exceeding EWG Health Guidelines.
See the What Can You Do? section below for all of the contaminants you can filter out and how to do it.
Where does Burbank’s water come from?
Burbank’s water comes from the Tujunga Wash – Los Angeles River watershed.
All 9 EPA assessed water sources in the Tujunga Wash – Los Angeles River watershed are in Impaired or Unknown condition. These include:
- Balboa Lake
- Burbank Western Channel
- Los Angeles River Reaches 3, 4, 5, and 6
- Toluca Lake
- Tujunga Wash
- Wildlife Lake
Ideally, a water source would be rated 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 Burbank’s water.
Conclusion – What Can You Do?
Information about water quality can be surprising.
But there’s no reason to lose hope. There are things you can do in your household as well as things you can do at a community level.
In Your Household:
- Use Berkey filters with activated carbon to filter out 14 of the 18 contaminants in your drinking water. (Berkey Light and Travel Berkey are the only types available in California.)
- To filter out 16 of the 18 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:
- 1,4-Dioxane – irritant of the eyes and respiratory tract.
- Barium – health risks in water
- Bromodichloromethane – health risks in drinking water
- Chloroform – side effects
- Chromium (total)
- Hexavalent chromium – health effects
- Total trihalomethanes – byproduct of chlorination*
*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.
Burbank’s water also contains Chlorate, a chemical that can damage the thyroid. Chlorate can’t be filtered out of your water at the household level. It’s important to encourage your local government to address water quality issues like this.
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: https://www.burbankca.gov/ to find contact information for your local officials.