But the success rate is high. "We've found with reverse osmosis devices a 92 percent removable rate," says Moore. "And the other systems will remove 96 percent." Either will lower arsenic levels from 50 ppb to less than 5 ppb.
Moore says there have been only a handful of cases where owners voluntarily tested their water, found elevated levels of arsenic, and elected not to treat their water. That's risky but legal--until the deed to the property is transferred, county regulations can't touch them. They can keep drinking that water as long as they live.
That's not for Dondzila, who lives across the border in Livingston County. "I have arsenic in my water," she says. "I have 36 ppb so I have reverse osmosis at my kitchen sink--and above that I have an osmosis removal filter. That brings it down to .001 ppb."
[Originally published in January, 2013.]