What is the Water Quality in Meriden, Connecticut?
Compared to other US cities, Meriden water quality ranks in the high range for contamination excluding Lead.
Most of their 31 contaminants have cancer-causing attributes.
- Chloroform is at extremely high levels: 70x health guidelines.
- Haloacetic acids (HAA5) are at extremely high levels: 269x health guidelines.
- Haloacetic acids (HAA9) are at extremely high levels: 491x health guidelines.
- HAA5 and HAA9 are byproducts of chlorine treatment, a common method of disinfecting water supplies.
Let’s look closer at what’s in Meriden water.
What’s in Meriden 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
- Haloacetic acids (HAA5) – Potential effect: Cancer
- Total trihalomethanes – Potential effect: Cancer
These are five of the 31 contaminants analyzed by the Environmental Working Group (ewg.org).
13 of these contaminants are rated as exceeding EWG Health Guidelines.
Does Meriden have Lead contamination?
Yes, Meriden has lead in its water. The most recent Lead samples collected in 2019 showed concentrations up to 6.7 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 filtered out.
See the What Can You Do? section below to learn how to filter out contaminants.
Where does Meriden’s water come from?
Meriden’s water comes from the Headwaters Quinnipiac River watershed.
14 of the 17 assessed water sources in the Headwaters Quinnipiac River watershed are in Impaired condition. These include:
- Hanover Pond
- Harbor Brook – multiple sections
- Misery Brook
- Patton Brook
- Quinnipiac River – multiple sections
- Sodom Brook
- Spoon Shop Brook
- Willow Brook
Ideally, a water source would be rated in Good condition. Black Pond, Honeypot Brook, and a section of Misery Brook are all in Good condition.
Whether a water source is in Impaired or Good condition refers to the quality of three uses:
- Aquatic Life
- Fish and Shellfish Consumption
Learn more from How’s My Waterway
See below for what you can do to improve Meriden’s water.
Conclusion – What Can You Do?
Information about water quality in Meriden can be surprising.
But there’s no reason to lose hope. There are things you can do in your home as well as things you can do at a community level.
- Use Berkey filters with activated carbon to filter out at least 78% of contaminants in your drinking water.
- To filter out 28 of the 31 contaminants, consider a Reverse Osmosis Pentair water filtration system for your house.
- These are more expensive than pitchers to purchase, but are more effective.
- They have the benefit of filtering out heavy hitters like:
- Chromium (total)
- Haloacetic acids (HAA5)
- Haloacetic acids (HAA9)
- Hexavalent chromium
- 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.
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.meridenct.gov/ to find contact information for your local officials.