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Drought-Stricken Water Systems Face Arsenic, Contaminant Worries

Aug. 31, 2022, 8:12 PM

Drought and wildfire are forcing drinking water utilities in the West to draw from lower-quality water sources and try to consolidate with neighboring utilities, a Utah drinking water official said Wednesday at the EPA’s annual drinking water workshop.

The region’s megadrought, driven by climate change, is depleting drinking water supplies, and wildfires threaten drinking water infrastructure, said Emily Frary, an environmental scientist at the Utah Department of Environmental Quality.

Utah officials are warning local water utilities that they will need to prepare to use long-mothballed sources of water that are less clean and may be laced with arsenic and other ...