Advocacy group says 48% of Arizona schools’ taps tested contain lead
PHOENIX – A study revealed that approximately half of Arizona schools’ water taps that were inspected tested positive for lead.
The Arizona PIRG Education Fund and the Environment Arizona Research & Policy Center gave the Grand Canyon State a “D” grade when it came to addressing the problem of lead contamination in school drinking water.
Of the 13,380 water fountains tested in Arizona schools two years ago, 48% of them tested positive for the damaging chemical.
The affect it has on children can be very harmful. It can impair how they learn, grow, and behave, according to John Rumpler of the Environment Arizona Research & Policy Center.
Even if the amount consumed is small, it can still be attributed to low IQ points and increased hyperactivity.
According to the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality, 96% of all fixtures tested were found adequate and no corrective action was necessary.
Fixtures and piping that had elevated levels of lead were being addressed.
“Schools should be safe places for our kids to learn and play, but Arizona is still not doing enough to protect our kids from lead in drinking water,” said Diane E. Brown, the executive director of the Arizona PIRG Education Fund, in a press release.
A proposed solution to the problem would be for the state to install certified filters on every water faucet, rather than waiting for children to test positive for lead consumption.