South Scottsdale Superfund contaminated groundwater explained


South Scottsdale groundwater was contaminated with trichloroethylene (TCE). This was discovered in 1981.   The chemicals were found in the groundwater used for drinking purposes.

Yep, that would cover Coronado/Scottsdale/Saguaro high school regions for several generations.

Per the CDC:

“There is strong evidence that trichloroethylene can cause kidney cancer in people and some evidence that it causes liver cancer and malignant lymphoma (a blood cancer). Lifetime exposure to trichloroethylene resulted in increased liver cancer in mice and increased kidney cancer in rats at relatively high exposure levels. There is some evidence for trichloroethylene-induced testicular cancer and leukemia in rats and lymphomas and lung tumors in mice.

The National Toxicology Program (NTP) has determined that trichloroethylene is a “known human carcinogen”. The EPA and the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) have determined that trichloroethylene is “carcinogenic to humans.”

Some human studies indicate that trichloroethylene may cause developmental effects such as spontaneous abortion, congenital heart defects, central nervous system defects, and small birth weight. However, these people were exposed to other chemicals as well. In some animal studies, exposure to trichloroethylene during development may have caused effects such as decreased body weight, increased incidences of heart defects, functional or structural changes in the developing nervous system, and effects on the immune system.”

What does this mean? If you lived in South Scottsdale prior to the 1980’s you may have been exposed to a waterborne carcinogen.

Contaminated water is no longer used, nor has been for several decades.

Fast forward to 2017. What can you do health wise?

Stop Smoking

Lose weight

Blood pressure 

Cholesterol labs

High school class of 1985 time to get your colonoscopy and for the women, your first mammogram, if you haven’t done so yet. Also, up to date gyn exam.  Men-prostate screening. Whoo-hoo.

Not much to do about the decades old TCE exposure as far as improving health, but do the above items and it could be a lifesaver.

If you are affected by this, so was I, growing up at the epicenter of this contamination from 1967-85.  Stay healthy and take charge of your health care surveillance, because no one else will.

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