CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Drinking water contamination has plagued several communities across the Capital Region. On Tuesday the New York State Legislator approved a new bill to expand water testing.
“The number one way this helps New Yorkers is by letting them know whats in their water,” said Elizabeth Moran, Environmental Policy Director at New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG).
Not being able to test for toxic chemicals in drinking water will soon be water under the bridge. Moran says this new bill will apply to communities big and small.
“Every New Yorker should have the basic understanding of whats in their taps so they can make informed decisions for themselves and their family,” said Moran.
A recent Siena College poll revealed that 64% of New Yorkers are really concerned about their drinking water.
Moran says this will bill will test for 40 emerging contaminants in drinking water in every municipality.
“Every New Yorker will have the security of knowing a whole list of PFAS chemicals that are being tested in their water. This means we can now act faster,” said she.
Following the PFOA water contamination in Hoosick Falls in 2015, the state promised to fix the testing loophole for smaller communities. Many water samples in Hoosick Falls came back showing high levels of PFOA, a chemical used by St. Gobain to make non-stick materials.
“A resident in Hoosick Falls took the initiative to test. But if they were a bigger community, they actually would have been mandated to test federally under the federal emerging contaminated list,” said she.
Approximately 2.5 million New Yorkers have not previously benefited from emerging contaminant testing; if Governor Cuomo signs the bill, they will finally find out if their water is safe to drink.