Benzene is one of the 20 most widely used chemicals in the United States. It is used mainly as a solvent (a substance that can dissolve or extract other substances) and as a starting material in making other chemicals. Benzene is a colorless, flammable liquid with a sweet odor. Benzene is a Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) which means it evaporates when exposed to air. Benzene is formed from natural processes, such as volcanoes and forest fires, but most exposure to benzene results from human activities.
Where Benzene in water Comes From
Benzene is commonly found in crude oil, gasoline, and cigarette smoke. Recent reports strongly suggest that very high amounts of benzene are being found in groundwater across the US due to hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” processes being used widely in the US to extract natural gas and oil from shale formations. Unfortunately, a Federal law nicknamed “The Halliburton Loophole” allows fracking companies to conceal which chemicals they are using for fracking operations and that leaves at-risk populations in affected areas without protection under the Safe Drinking Water Act. Fracking and oil spills are believed to be the prime cause of benzene contamination today.
Benzene Water Contamination expected to get worse
Fracking has increased natural gas production in the US to levels not seen since the 1970’s, and companies involved in the practice are expanding its use at a record pace. Two recent fracking accidents, one in Pennsylvania and one in Louisiana discharged massive amounts of fracking fluids that tested positive for benzene into the environment. The accident in Louisiana killed a herd of cows almost instantly when they drank water contaminated by the spill. In Colorado, An emergency room nurse in Durango nearly died when she came in contact with a fracking fluid while treating a drill rig worker.
States with Widespread Benzene Water Contamination
The list above should be considered at best a partial list; the “Halliburton Loophole” makes it extremely difficult to track the spread of groundwater contamination caused by fracking.
How Benzene will kill you
If benzene and other fracking chemicals enter your water supply in high enough concentrations, you could die before being able to get to a hospital. Benzene is an irritant, if you experience eye, nose or throat irritation after coming in contact with suspect water; you need to seek medical help immediately.
Benzene is a potent carcinogen, long term exposure to it will cause a variety of cancers such as acute lymphocytic leukemia in children, as well as chronic lymphocytic leukemia, and other blood-related cancers, such as multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma, in adults.
Pregnant women face a severe risk of causing their babies to be born with congenital heart defects if they are exposed to benzene even in small amounts!
How to Protect Yourself
Since benzene is a gas, it will evaporate from your tap water and can fill your home with toxic gas. Benzene also absorbs readily through the skin, so in order to protect yourself you must stop benzene before it enters your home. Life’s Dolphin Whole Home filtration® system uses our exclusive Charged Modified Composite Blend® filter media that has been proven to remove over 99% of all benzene found in your water, and hundreds of other toxins as well.
If you have an existing filtration system, you can replace your filter with the Life Super Filter®; it fits most filtration systems and uses the same Charged Modified Composite Blend® filter media found in our Dolphin filtration system.
Are you worried about contaminants in your water? Call us today at 877-959-7977 for a free evaluation.
The contaminants or other substances removed or reduced by this water treatment device are not necessarily in your water. Click here to receive a free water quality report to find out if benzene has been found in your water.