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Ensuring Water Quality Right from the Source: Taipei Water Department Provides Citizens with and Reassuring and Quality Taipei Water

In response to June 26 reports from Japanese media regarding the presence of persistent chemicals like perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) in water bodies and tap water in Japan, the Taipei Water Department has issued the following statement: To guarantee the safety of drinking water, the Taipei Water Department has incorporated perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) such as PFOA, PFOS and perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS) into its regular water quality monitoring and testing regimen in recent years. Results from the past two years consistently meet water quality standards set by various countries.

The Taipei Water Department clarified that global bodies like the World Health Organization (WHO) and national authorities are actively reviewing and establishing standards for PFCs in drinking water, considering health impacts and detection capabilities. WHO's provisional standards set the limit at 100 parts per trillion (ppt) for both PFOA and PFOS. Japan has set a provisional combined limit for PFOA and PFOS of less than 50 ppt, Australia's guidelines specify less than 70 ppt for PFOS and PFHxS combined, and less than 560 ppt for PFOA. Taiwan's Ministry of Environment has set provisional guidelines at less than 50 ppt for PFOA+PFOS and less than 70 ppt for PFOS + PFHxS. Taipei Water Department's monitoring consistently meets these standards.

The Taipei Water Department also pointed out that PFCs are commonly used in manufacturing everyday products such as non-stick cookware, clothing, and food packaging. While convenient, the manufacturing processes' wastewater and emissions can pollute water bodies, air and soil. Water sources managed by the Taipei Water Department remain safeguarded from such industrial pollution.

With a commitment to providing high-quality and ample drinking water, the Taipei Water Department operates a certified water quality laboratory and an online monitoring system. It oversees 95 monitoring stations at water sources, purification plants and booster stations, ensuring continuous, rigorous monitoring of water quality around the clock. For inquiries, users can contact the Taipei Water Department's 24-hour customer service hotline at (02) 8733-5678.