A new study finds elevated levels of synthetic chemicals in drinking water supplies in 33 states, including Colorado.
Three cities south of Colorado Springs have detected elevated levels of perfluorinated compounds in drinking water.
Possible sources include industrial facilities and military bases and airports where a particular type of firefighting foam has been used, according to Christopher Higgins, an associate professor at the Colorado School of Mines and the study's co-author.
“Really every state in the nation has the potential of having these compounds contaminating their water supplies," Higgins said. "It certainly warrants a national level look at these compounds.”
The Environmental Protection Agency says exposure to the compounds has been connected to low birth weights, cancer and other health effects. The cities are working on ways to improve their water quality.
The Air Force has offered them more than $4 million while it investigates the issue.