CA Issues Perchlorate Health Goal

Thursday, March 11, 2004
Contact: 

Perchlorate Information Bureau
News Bureau: 916-448-3152

James Strock, former Secretary of the California Environmental Protection Agency (Cal/EPA) and former chief law enforcement officer of the U.S. EPA, issued the following statement regarding the Public Health Goal (PHG) issued today by the California Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA):

"It is important to note that Cal/EPA, in issuing a public health goal for perchlorate today, declared its intention to take into account the findings of an ongoing National Academy of Sciences panel examining the health issues relating to perchlorate.

"This is essential as California begins consideration of adopting a drinking water standard for perchlorate. Appropriately, Cal/EPA has committed to reviewing the NAS findings and making revisions to the PHG as necessary. The NAS report is critical to the credibility and authority of the PHG, which should be based on the best available, most current scientific data.

"The PHG is not a drinking water standard — it is a preliminary regulatory goal for use in subsequent deliberations to set a drinking water standard. Accordingly, it would be an error to assume that exposures above this level place people at risk. Credible human research — most importantly the Greer human health study which is recognized by California and other regulators and experts as authoritative — suggests, along with others studies, that it is unlikely that perchlorate at low levels poses risks of adverse health effects in the general population or in sensitive subpopulations."