What Is It?
From the U.S. EPA’s website:
“Beryllium is an inorganic metallic element in the periodic table. Because it is an element, it does not degrade nor can it be destroyed. Compounds of beryllium are either white or colorless and do not have a particular smell. Beryllium naturally enters surface water and ground water through the weathering of rocks and soils or from industrial wastewater discharges. The major source of environmental releases from human activities are coal and fuel oil combustion.”
Is It Harmful?
“Some people who drink water containing beryllium well in excess of the maximum contaminant level (MCL) for many years could develop intestinal lesions.”
What is the Maximum Contaminant Level?
The EPA has set both an MCLG, Maximum Contaminant Level Goal, and Maximum Contaminant Level for beryllium. An MCLG is a non-enforceable guideline of sorts for determining safe levels of a contaminant, while an MCL is an EPA-enforced regulation for drinking water supplies. Barium’s MCLG and MCL is 0.004 mg/L (or 4 parts per billion).
How Can I Test for It?
How Can I Treat It?