West Virginians Have Renewed Worries About Water Quality

Originally published on January 22, 2014 8:12 am
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And while Californians worry about air quality, West Virginians worry about water quality, again.


Two weeks ago, a chemical spill into the Elk River left 300,000 residents with contaminated water supply. The water was tainted with and MCMH, a chemical used to wash coal.

MONTAGNE: That pollutant was cleared from the river and tap water declared safe to drink. But these reports of clean water may be exaggerated.

INSKEEP: A different chemical called PPH also leaked from the tank. Officials are just now learning about the PPH and so they never tested for its presence in the local water supply.

MONTAGNE: The water company is now testing for PPH. Although, authorities contend the chemical has low toxicity.


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