Water Quality in Methuen, Massachusetts
What is the water quality in Methuen?
Compared to other US cities over 50,000, Methuen water quality ranks in the low-mid range for contamination excluding Lead.
Most of their 19 contaminants have cancer-causing attributes. Chloroform is at particularly high levels: 14x health guidelines.
Let’s look closer at what’s in Methuen’s water.
What’s in Methuen 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 19 contaminants analyzed by the Environmental Working Group (ewg.org).
7 of these contaminants are rated as exceeding EWG Health Guidelines.
Does Methuen have Lead contamination?
Yes, Methuen has lead in its water. The most recent Lead samples collected throughout 2018 showed concentrations up to 1.0 parts per billion.
This is low compared to the legal limit of 15 parts per billion.
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 for all of the contaminants you can filter out and how to do it.
Where does Methuen’s water come from?
Methuen water comes from the Spicket River watershed.
All 64 of the waterbodies in the Spicket River watershed are in Impaired condition. These impaired water sources include:
- Canobie Lake
- Captain Pond
- Ezekiel Pond
- Forest Lake
- Hedgehog Pond
- Hog Hill Brook
- Spicket River
- World End Pond
Ideally, a water source would be rated in Good condition. See below for what you can do to improve Methuen’s water.
Learn more from How’s My Waterway here
Conclusion – What Can You Do?
Information about water quality in Methuen can be surprising and downright scary.
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.
- Use Berkey filters with activated carbon to filter out at least 77.8% of contaminants in your drinking water.
- Berkey filters can also remove up to 99.99% of Lead in Methuen water.
- Brita can filter 11 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 16 of the 19 contaminants, consider a Reverse Osmosis water filtration system for your house.
- These are typically more expensive than pitchers to purchase, but may require fewer filter changes over time.
- They have the benefit of filtering out heavy hitters like:
- Chromium (hexavalent)
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.cityofmethuen.net/ to find contact information for your local officials.