Thurs 5/23: SB 200 / AB 217 – Drinking Water – “Nearly every Californian is exposed to unsafe drinking water.”

Quote from To pack the biggest punch, ALL of the CA Indivisible coalition are working together to drive calls to our legislators to push important bills through their house.  Today, we’re focusing on water. 

polifact on water

Not only were Governor Newsom’s remarks true but the number of Californians affected by water pollution is probably higher than 1 million and the contaminants found have serious associated health risks including cancer. There are almost 400 small rural water systems and schools are unable to provide safe drinking water and the problem could effect everyone.

Existing CA state law already established that every human being has the right to safe, clean, affordable, and accessible water. SB 200 (which has already passed the State Senate and goes to the Assembly) and AB 217 (still in the Assembly) establishes a “long-term sustainable funding source” – the  Safe Drinking Water Fund –  to maintain and supply clean water to certain communities with general fund dollars and fees on agriculture. CA is already spending $10 billion on water pollution control every year. This makes it official and sets the stage for new solutions to help keep our water sources cleaner.

Minimal script: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Assemblymember [___] to support  SB 200 and AB 217 to ensure that all Californians, including me and my family, have access to clean, safe drinking water.

State Assemblymember Monique Limón (CA-37): SAC (916) 310-2037  email
Not your people?


From OEHHA (Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment): Drinking water contaminants.

Find the contaminants from your tap: Find your community/home on this interactive drinking water map here. Plug in your zip code or exact address. A info pop-up will describe the exact type of contamination found there.(Explanation of color index here. NOTE:The drinking water contaminant index used in CalEnviroScreen 3.0 is not a measure of compliance with government standards. The drinking water contaminant index is a combination of data that takes into account the relative concentrations of different contaminants and whether multiple contaminants are present. The indicator does NOT indicate whether water is safe to drink.)

Example: Ventura County Government Center, at 800 S. Victoria Ave., Ventura CA

drinking water map

Here are the pop-up information box results:Census Tract 6111001503 has 5,898 people. This indicator is an index for a select number of contaminants found in drinking water. Average concentrations of contaminants and average violations are ranked by census tract and assigned percentiles.  The data is from 2005 to 2013, the most recent complete compliance cycle.  

The drinking water contaminant score for this census tract is 585.41, which is the sum of the contaminant and violation percentiles.  The drinking water contaminant percentile is 62, meaning it is higher than 62% of the census tracts in California. The table below shows this census tract’s percentiles for each contaminant and violation percentile: Arsenic – 31.41, Cadmium – 92.60, Chromium Hexavalent – 100, Dibromochloropropane (DBCP) – 75.46,  Lead – 71.2, Nitrate (NO3) – 51.26, Total Trihalomethanes (THM) – 68.05, Uranium – 95.41.”

drinking water resultsMethodology for Drinking water comtaminant indicator here.

Drinking Water results by contaminant (Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet) by zip code.


Link here for interactive version. Article.

CA water problems


  • They grow the nation’s food but they can’t drink the water (NYTimes)
  • Why California’s water crisis is so difficult to solve (NYTimes)
  • California Water Crisis hits Latinx farmworkers (color lines)
  • Gavin Newsom- true that more than a million Californians don’t have clean water (
  • Lifetime of drinking CA water could raise cancer risk, study finds (guardian)Study estimate 15,000 cancer cases could stem from chemical in CA tap water. (CNN)

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