Industrial Chemicals in Drinking Water More Toxic Than Thought

Industrial chemicals called perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl found in public water supplies across the United States are toxic at levels seven to 10 times lower than previously believed, a federal government report says.

High levels of exposure to the chemicals are associated with liver damage, some forms of cancer, developmental problems and other health risks, the Associated Press reported.

The chemicals are no longer used by U.S. manufacturers, but had been used in fire-suppressing foam, nonstick pans, fast-food wrappers, stain-resistant fabric and carpet and other products.

The Environmental Protection Agency has scheduled hearings on the chemicals, and Wednesday's release of the report will likely lead state and local water systems with the chemicals to increase filtering, according to the AP.

"The more we test, the more we find," said Olga Naidenko, a science adviser to the nonprofit Environmental Working Group.

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