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Contaminated Lead Water The Effects in Newark Essay

Related Topics: Blood Risk Children Environment

Pages:7 (2108 words)



Topic:Public Health

Document Type:Essay


The Effects of Contaminated Lead Water in Newark


In recent times, there has been a consistent public outcry on continuous leaching of a significant amount of lead into Newark’s water system. However, the local municipal officials have been refuting the claims despite the fact that more than ten percent of water samples collected in 2018 were found with more than 15.8 parts per billion higher than federal lead limit of 15.0 parts per billion. It is also established that Newark’s officials have not been conducting lead and copper rule sampling as required of them, thus failing to identify high content of lead in drinking water. As a result, state department of environmental protection gave an alarm to Newark officials for exceeding the federal limits of lead in drinking water.

This paper therefore, will therefore focus on establishing the effects of Lead contaminated drinking water in Newark to the residents particularly the young children and pregnant women. We shall also check on the current efforts to mitigate the situation, including how bill A676 environment-water supply is vital for this course.


According to state released figures, the levels of lead in drinking water in Newark have never been as high as they are now in 17 years. This could be due to Lead’s unique properties like malleability, softness, resistance to corrosion, poor conductibility, and ductility make it hard for industrialists to give up the use of lead. Industrialists use lead in various processes including in the making of pipes, fuels, and lead paints. Despite its usefulness, lead is very harmful to the environment and humans (Sol, 2019). Further, because lead is non-biodegradable, when it is released into the environment, it accumulates over time thus increasing the hazards its negative effects has on the environment (Wani et al. 2015). When it makes its way into the body either through drinking water or contact, lead negatively affects nearly all the parts of the body. Thus, the high level of lead in drinking water in Newark has elicited strong reactions from local residents and organizations. One of the organizations that have been battling this issue is The National Resources Defense Council (NRDC). NRDC together with Newark Education Workers Caucus (NEW Caucus) has filed a lawsuit against the city (Sol, 2019). Unfortunately, the local municipal officials have been refuting the claims despite the fact that more than ten percent of water samples collected in 2018 were found with more than 15.8 parts per billion higher than federal lead limit of 15.0 parts per billion. (Muoio & Sam 2018)

Causes of Lead Contaminated Water in Newark

Municipal officials say that while Newark owns the water mains, it does not own or control the service lines that connect Newark homes to the city water supply. The lead in the water is from the dissolution of lead in the pipes. Since the leaching is from the pipes that the city doesn’t own, Newark has been pushing the message that it is not responsible for the lead situation. Further, given the fact that private enterprises own the pipes, any proposed measures to correct problems arising because of bad pipes requires a lot of cooperative compromise on the part of private citizens and the state. (Sol, 2019). Moreover, the effort of the city lowers the level of PH in water since 2012 in order to control the cancer-causing agents could have significantly contributed to more lead leaching through the pipes.

Effects of Contaminated Lead Drinking Water

The most unfortunate situation is that the people who are most at risk from being harmed by lead-saturated drinking water are children and Some of the health effects may not be reversible. Thus, imposing a long-term risk for Newark’s children which is very serious due to lead’s effect on the brain development of children. This vulnerability is due to higher rate at which pregnant mothers and children absorb lead in drinking water relative to how much adults absorb it. Adults…

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…public viewing (Jasey, 2019).

However, the bill may also pose a demerit in a scenario where unauthenticated results are posted by these institutions for public viewing. This may create unnecessary tension and fear amongst those that are directly affected by such findings. Secondly, implementation of the bill may increase financial burden on the government in an instance where the whole water piping system is to be replaced (Jasey, 2019).


Finally, the DEP shall provide any necessary technical information necessary for the institutions to properly carry out the necessary tests. Further, the bill demands that every institution post the results of its tests on its official website within 30 days of the completion of such tests. Information to be posted on the website will include remedial actions the institution is taking or planning to take to correct any elevated lead levels (Jasey, 2019). These guidelines will be very useful in helping Newark reduce its lead contamination problem which has done a lot of harm to the community. Thus, reducing costs spent on healthcare as a result of drinking lead contaminated water.


There is an urgent need for this bill to be fully enforced. Moreover, each test has to be done by a certified laboratory in line with best industry practice as well as the transparency needed for an exercise of such public interest. The United States Environment Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) have guidelines on how such tests should be carried out. The bill requires that if a test reveals the presence of elevated lead levels, the educational institution should move to close off access to the affected outlets and report the results of the test to the DEP (Jasey, 2019).

Furthermore, with enaction of this bill, undoubtedly, the big challenge of Newark residents will be solved by replacing all the lead pipes that aids in contaminating water. Absolutely the cost of replacing the pipes cannot be compared to the lives of our…

Sample Source(s) Used


Hanna-Attisha, M., LaChance, J., Sadler, R. C., & Champney Schnepp, A. (2016). Elevated blood lead levels in children associated with the Flint drinking water crisis: a spatial analysis of risk and public health response. American journal of public health, 106(2), 283-290.(

Jasey, N. (2019). Assembly Higher Education Hearing (19:00 1/17/2019 A-4866(

Kiefer, E. (2018). Newark Hands Out Thousands Of Lead Water Filters After Lawsuit (

Leyden, L. (2018). A Water Crisis in Newark Brings New Worries (

Panico, R. (2019). Newark Exceeds Lead Levels Again, Receives 3 Other Water Violations (


Sol, M. W. (2019). The lead in Newark’s drinking water has hit a 'jaw dropping’ high level, tests show (NJ Advance Media for (

Wani, A. L., Ara, A., & Usmani, J. A. (2015). Lead toxicity: a review. Interdisciplinary toxicology, 8(2), 55-64.(

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