72% of drinking water in Illinois comes from surface water such as rivers, lakes, and reservoirs. Many Illinois residents also depend on ground water sources such as aquifers (e.g. Mahomet Aquifer which serves much of east central Illinois) or private wells.
The Problem: Lead and Toxic Algae Pollution
While we have access to some of the cleanest drinking water supplies in the world, each location and type of water source has its own threats from pollution. Some current threats to drinking water supplies include lead and cyanotoxins (algae).
After the lead-contaminated drinking water crisis in Flint, Michigan, the nation has focused increased attention on this very real threat to our health, particularly the health of our children.
Drinking water sources are also suffering increased threats from cyanobacteria that can produce highly potent cyanotoxins such as microsystins. Nutrient pollution is a known contributor to the creation of cyanobacterial blooms.
- US EPA’s Learn About Lead Webpage
- Basic Information About Lead in Drinking Water
- Chicago Tribune on Lead Risk in Illinois Drinking Water
- EPA webpage on Cyanobacteria/Cyanotoxins
- EPA’s Safe Water Query Form for IL
- Check the annual drinking water quality reports for IL
- How Safe is Bottled Water?
The Natural Resources Defense Council answers all your questions about bottled water.
The Solution: You and Prairie Rivers Network
Working with our members, partners, and funders, Prairie Rivers Network works to protect our water on many fronts. From reducing nutrient pollution that causes to toxic algae blooms, to calling on our lawmakers to #gettheleadout, to fighting for common sense toxic coal ash pollution laws, we are fighting for clean water for all the people, fish, and wildlife of Illinois.