In November 2022, NCCU implemented a voluntary program to test campus drinking water for the presence of lead and mitigate lead levels in potable water sources that test above a pre-determined actionable level.
Throughout this process, we commit to full transparency, including sharing information about our process, progress, results and mitigation steps taken.
Lead is a toxic metal that can cause adverse health effects for children and adults when consumed. “Exposure” in drinking water occurs when people consume water that contains lead through drinking or food preparation. It is important to know that lead is not absorbed through the skin so handwashing, showering, laundry and dishwashing do not pose the same risk as drinking or food preparation.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), exposure to lead even at levels near the EPA action level alone would not likely elevate blood lead levels in most adults. However, some individuals are at risk for high blood pressure, kidney disease, stroke and memory problems due to lead overexposure, and children under the age of six are most at risk from overexposure to lead. In children, exposure can cause behavioral issues, learning disabilities, hearing impairment, low IQ and poor classroom performance. Pregnant women and their fetuses are also vulnerable to lead exposure, as high levels can harm the fetus, causing lower birth weight and slow mental and physical development.