Radioactivity levels are “at or below” safe levels in Pennsylvania rivers, state regulators said on Monday, based on water samples taken last November and December from seven rivers.
The results come at a time of growing scrutiny of the potential hazards of radioactivity and other contaminants in wastewater from natural-gas drilling. The wastewater is routinely sent to treatment plants in Pennsylvania, which then discharge their waste into rivers.
In a letter sent to the state on Monday, the federal Environmental Protection Agency noted the state’s test results, but instructed officials there to perform testing within 30 days for radioactivity at drinking-water intake plants.
It also said that all permits issued by the state to treatment plants handling this waste should be reviewed to ensure that operators were complying with the law.