EPA Studies Fireworks Impact on Water Quality

The EPA will soon begin assessing Perchlorate occurrence in water after the usage of fireworks. 

The EPA recently put out a request for applications for funding to study the levels of perchlorates in drinking water, a chemical used in fireworks, and other explosives. Traditionally fireworks have been a mainstay of American celebrations during both New Year and the summer season. New concerns about perchlorates have prompted the EPA to look further into their environmental impact. Applications are open through September 14th.

According to the EPA’s request for applications: 

Ensuring clean and safe drinking water is important for protecting human health and the environment. While perchlorate comes from multiple sources, higher concentrations come from its use as an oxidizer in rocket propulsion systems, explosives, road flares, and fireworks. Fireworks, when used around surface and groundwater sources have the capacity to contaminate surface and groundwater used as drinking water sources. Prior research has investigated contamination from fireworks; however, there are gaps in understanding the magnitude and extent of perchlorate contamination before and after fireworks discharge around drinking water sources. This research will provide states and utilities with a better scientific understanding of the behavior of perchlorate after fireworks events to ultimately provide them with information and a construct as to whether management options are needed.

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