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Water: Current Water Quality Criteria

DRAFT: Updated National Recommended Water Quality Criteria - Human Health

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EPA has updated its national recommended water quality criteria for human health for 94 chemical pollutants to reflect the latest scientific information and EPA policies, including updated fish consumption rates described in a new report. EPA accepted written scientific views from the public on the draft updated human health criteria. The comment period for the draft water quality criteria ended August 13, 2014.  Once finalized, EPA water quality criteria provide recommendations to states and tribes authorized to establish water quality standards under the Clean Water Act.

View EPA’s currently recommended criteria


Draft Updates to the Human Health Criteria Table

      Human Health for the consumption of
Pollutant CAS Number P/NP* Water + Organism
(µg/L)
Organism Only
(µg/L)
Acenaphthene 83-32-9 P 200 400
Acrolein 107-02-8 P 3 400
Acrylonitrile 107-13-1 P 0.049 6.5
Aldrin 309-00-2 P 0.0000010 0.0000010
alpha-BHC 319-84-6 P 0.00042 0.00047
alpha-Endosulfan 959-98-8 P 8 10
Anthracene 120-12-7 P 200 200
Benzene 71-43-2 P 0.45-1.6 6.2-23
Benzidine 92-87-5 P 0.00011 0.0065
Benzo(a) Anthracene 56-55-3 P 0.011 0.013
Benzo(a) Pyrene 50-32-8 P 0.00077 0.00084
Benzo(b) Fluoranthene 205-99-2 P 0.0037 0.0038
Benzo(k) Fluoranthene 207-08-9 P 0.011 0.012
beta-BHC 319-85-7 P 0.0015 0.0016
beta-Endosulfan 33213-65-9 P 10 20
Bis(Chloromethyl) Ether 542-88-1 NP 0.00012 0.014
Bis(2-Chloroethyl) Ether 111-44-4 P 0.024 1.5
** Bis(2-Chloro-1-Methylethyl) Ether 108-60-1 P 200 2,000
Bis(2-Ethylhexyl) Phthalate 117-81-7 P 0.028 0.029
Bromoform 75-25-2 P 5.2 50
Butylbenzyl Phthalate 85-68-7 P 800 3,000
Carbon Tetrachloride 56-23-5 P 0.3 3
Chlordane 57-74-9 P 0.0000068 0.0000068
Chlorobenzene 108-90-7 P 90 600
Chlorodibromomethane 124-48-1 P 0.58 8.4
Chloroform 67-66-3 P 50 1,000
Chlorophenoxy Herbicide (2,4-D) 94-75-7 NP 200 800
Chlorophenoxy Herbicide (2,4,5-TP) 93-72-1 NP 10 10
Chrysene 218-01-9 P 0.022 0.022
Cyanide 57-12-5 P 3 400
Dibenzo(a,h)Anthracene 53-70-3 P 0.000063 0.000063
Dichlorobromomethane 75-27-4 P 0.72 14
Dieldrin 60-57-1 P 0.000010 0.000010
Diethyl Phthalate 84-66-2 P 4,000 90,000
Dimethyl Phthalate 131-11-3 P 50,000 4,000,000
Di-n-Butyl Phthalate 84-74-2 P 200 400
Dinitrophenols 25550-58-7 NP 10 800
Endosulfan Sulfate 1031-07-8 P 10 10
Endrin 72-20-8 P 0.01 0.01
Endrin Aldehyde 7421-93-4 P 0.03 0.03
Ethylbenzene 100-41-4 P 400 1,000
Fluoranthene 206-44-0 P 40 50
Fluorene 86-73-7 P 30 40
gamma-BHC (Lindane) 58-89-9 P 2.5 2.8
Heptachlor 76-44-8 P 0.000023 0.000024
Heptachlor Epoxide 1024-57-3 P 0.000016 0.000016
Hexachlorobenzene 118-74-1 P 0.0000064 0.0000064
Hexachlorobutadiene 87-68-3 P 0.008 0.008
Hexachlorocyclo-hexane-Technical 608-73-1 0.0011 0.0012
Hexachlorocyclopentadiene 77-47-4 P 0.6 0.6
Hexachloroethane 67-72-1 P 0.1 0.1
Ideno(1,2,3-cd)Pyrene 193-39-5 P 0.0045 0.0048
Isophorone 78-59-1 P 27 1,100
Methoxychlor 72-43-5 NP 0.4 0.4
Methyl Bromide 74-83-9 P 100 8,000
Methylene Chloride 75-09-2 P 8.0 510
Nitrobenzene 98-95-3 P 10 300
Pentachlorobenzene 608-93-5 NP 0.02 0.02
Pentachlorophenol 87-86-5 P 0.02 0.02
Phenol 108-95-2 P 2,000 100,000
Pyrene 129-00-0 P 20 20
Tetrachloroethylene 127-18-4 P 10 40
Toluene 108-88-3 P 300 2,000
Toxaphene 8001-35-2 P 0.000019 0.000019
Trichloroethylene 79-01-6 P 0.5 4
Vinyl Chloride 75-01-4 P 0.018 0.68
1,1,1-Trichloroethane 71-55-6 P 10,000 100,000
1,1,2,2-Tetrachloroethane 79-34-5 P 0.1 1
1,1,2-Trichloroethane 79-00-5 P 0.45 12
1,1-Dichloroethylene 75-35-4 P 200 4,000
1,2,4-Trichlorobenzene 120-82-1 P 8 10
1,2,4,5-Tetrachlorobenzene- 95-94-3 NP 0.04 0.04
1,2-Dichlorobenzene 95-50-1 P 700 1,000
1,2-Dichloroethane 107-06-2 P 0.29 13
1,2-Dichloropropane 78-87-5 P 0.71 16
1,2-Diphenylhydrazine 122-66-7 P 0.02 0.1
1,2-Trans-Dichloroethylene 156-60-5 P 100 2,000
1,3-Dichlorobenzene 541-73-1 P 5 10
1,3-Dichloropropene 542-75-6 P 0.2 4
1,4-Dichlorobenzene 106-46-7 P 200 200
2,4,5-Trichlorophenol- 95-95-4 NP 200 400
2,4,6-Trichlorophenol 88-06-2 P 1.4 3.2
2,4-Dichlorophenol 120-83-2 P 10 60
2,4-Dimethylphenol 105-67-9 P 100 1,000
2,4-Dinitrophenol 51-28-5 P 10 500
2,4-Dinitrotoluene 121-14-2 P 0.0378 0.711
2-Chloronaphthalene 91-58-7 P 90 100
2-Chlorophenol 95-57-8 P 20 300
2-Methyl-4,6-Dinitrophenol 534-52-1 P 2 60
3,3'-Dichlorobenzidine 91-94-1 P 0.028 0.055
3-Methyl-4-Chlorophenol 59-50-7 P 500 3,000
4,4'-DDD 72-54-8 P 0.000019 0.000019
4,4'-DDE 72-55-9 P 0.0000376 0.0000376
4,4'-DDT 50-29-3 P 0.0000072 0.0000072

* P/NP – Indicates either a Priority Pollutant (P) or a Non Priority Pollutant (NP).

** Bis(2-Chloro-1-Methylethyl) Ether was previously listed as Bis(2-Chloroisopropyl) Ether


NOTE: Due to outstanding technical issues, including new toxicity factors and bioaccumulation factors, EPA is not updating criteria for the following chemical pollutants at this time: antimony, arsenic, asbestos, barium, beryllium, cadmium, chromium (III or VI), copper, manganese, methylmercury, nickel, nitrates, nitrosamines, N-nitrosodibutylamine, N-nitrosodiethylamine, N-nitrosopyrrolidine, N-nitrosodimethylamine, N-nitrosodi-n-propylamine, N-nitrosodiphenylamine, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), selenium, thallium, zinc, or 2,3,7,8-TCDD (dioxin). See EPA’s current criteria recommendations for these chemical pollutants.

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