EWG pulls an ‘Erin Crockovich’

December 19, 2010

Group funds ‘Erin Brockvich’ chemical in D.C., Bethesda Water” was this morning’s scary Washington Post headline. The comrades at the Environmental Working Group reportedly found hexavalent chromium (Cr-6) in drinking water across the country at levels up to 200 times greater than the goal proposed by California (0.06 ppb). Cr-6 reportedly is associated with increased cancer risk in laboratory mice.

Before you swear off tap water, run to your doctor, join a class action lawsuit or do anything other than simply roll on the floor laughing at Ken Kook and his fellow EWG Krazies, here’s a few things to consider:

  1. Outside of a hotly disputed study of a 1970s-era Chinese population, epidemiologic studies have not associated Cr-6 exposure with increased risk of cancer. Even the EPA acknowledges this (See p. 207 of April 2010 EPA review document). Then there’s this comment from a review of the Cr-6 epidemiology:

    The weight of scientific evidence supports that Cr-6 is not carcinogenic in humans via the oral route of exposure at permissible drinking-water concentrations. [J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2002 May 24;65(10):701-46.]

  2. Mice are not little people. So who cares whether lab mice poisoned with Cr-6 got cancer or did cartwheels?
  3. No violations of the EPA drinking water standard for chromium were reported. While there are no specific drinking water standards for Cr-6, the EPA oral reference dose (RfD) for Cr-6, which includes a monster safety factor of 300, is way above the levels of Cr-6 detected by EWG.
  4. The proposed California standard for Cr-6 is not science-based.
  5. The EWG specializes in efforts to scare people about the mere presence of chemicals and metals in drinking water. The group seems to be impervious to Paracelsus’ 450-year-old basic toxicology principle that “the dose makes the poison.”
  6. Reporter Lyndsey Layton is apparently the radical environmental movement’s new stenographer at the Washington Post, following in the embarrassing tradition of Juliet Eilperin, Joby Warrick, Gary Lee and others. Layton is also assisting the left in its jihad against bisphenol A (BPA).

So that just about covers it for EWG’s hexavalent chromium scare — junk science manufactured by radical leftists and trumpeted by a media stooge.

3 Responses to “EWG pulls an ‘Erin Crockovich’”

  1. adrianvance Says:

    What is the toxic dose? Until that concentration is determined, or here noted, all written about Cr(VI)in water is of no value. We pass every poison known to nature every day of our lives, but in very low concentrations. The first rule of toxicology is, “The dose is critical.”

    For conservative thought, science and humor see: http://adrianvance.blogspot.com “The Two Minute Conservative” for radio/TV hosts, opinion page editors and dinner table conversationalists. Piss off a liberal tomorrow with facts.

  2. henrybowman Says:

    “200 times greater than the goal proposed by California”

    Wow. It’s 200 times LESS than the goal proposed by Rube Goldberg. Who the hell cares, either way? California is the state that named playground sand as a “hazardous substance,” and treats brass figurines as if it fully expects them to be eaten by consumers.

    Click to access Cal%20Prop%2065.pdf

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