Johnson City, Tennessee

Johnson City, Tennessee Johnson City, Tennessee

What is the Water Quality in Johnson City, Tennessee?

Compared to other US cities, Johnson City water quality ranks in the lower-middle range for contamination excluding Lead.

Most of their 16 contaminants have cancer-causing attributes.

  • Chloroform is at very high levels: 13x health guidelines.
  • Haloacetic acids (HAA5) are at extremely high levels: 151x health guidelines.
  • Haloacetic acids (HAA9) are at extremely high levels: 275x health guidelines.
    • These are both byproducts of the chlorine treatment process most water supplies go through.

Let’s look closer at what’s in Johnson City water.

What’s in Johnson City water?

Here are the top 5 chemical compounds in your water and what health issues they can potentially cause:

  1. Bromodichloromethane – Potential effect: Cancer
  2. Chloroform – Potential effect: Cancer
  3. Hexavalent Chromium – Potential effect: Cancer
  4. Radium – Potential effect: Cancer
  5. Total trihalomethanes – Potential effect: Cancer

These are five of the 16 contaminants analyzed by the Environmental Working Group (ewg.org).

8 of these contaminants are rated as exceeding EWG Health Guidelines.

Does Johnson City have Lead contamination?

Yes, Johnson City has lead in its water. The most recent Lead samples collected from 2015 through 2017 showed concentrations up to 1.4 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 Johnson City’s water come from?

Johnson City’s water comes from the Brush Creek watershed.

The only water source in the Brush Creek watershed is in Impaired condition. This is Brush Creek itself.

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:

  1. Drinking Water
  2. Aquatic Life
  3. Fish and Shellfish Consumption
  4. Recreation

Learn more from How’s My Waterway

See below for what you can do to improve Johnson City’s water.

What Can You Do?

Information about water quality in Johnson City 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 expensive whole house systems.

  • It costs less per gallon.
  • Needs fewer filter changes.
  • And it doesn’t make your water taste weird.

Take Control of Your Water with Berkey Filters

  • Use Berkey filters with activated carbon to filter out at least 75% of contaminants in your drinking water.
    • This includes Chloroform and Haloacetic acids.
    • Berkey filters can also remove up to 99.99% of Lead in Johnson City water.
    • Brita can filter 5 contaminants (31%) 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 13 of the 16 contaminants (81%), consider a Reverse Osmosis water filtration system for your whole house.
    • These are more expensive than pitchers to purchase, but can be more effective.
    • They have the benefit of filtering out heavy hitters like:

*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: https://www.johnsoncitytn.org/ to find contact information for your local officials.

Water Quality in Other Tennessee Cities

Tennessee Water Quality Page

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