Chromium is a metallic, chemical element found naturally in rocks, plants, soil, volcanic dust and animals. There are multiple forms of chromium. One, hexavalent chromium, or chromium 6, is a generally man-made chemical compound used in textile dyes, metal finishing, wood preservatives and fungicides. It can be present in different forms in the environment, changing from one form to another in water and soil. Hexavalent chromium can have adverse health effects at certain levels.
Learn more about hexavalent chromium from the AWWA.
Tampa Bay Water regularly monitors its drinking water sources for chromium, and for more than 20 years, has provided water that is far below the local, state and federal standards for chromium. While we are not required to monitor specifically for hexavalent chromium, we monitor for total chromium, which would include hexavalent chromium if it were present.
The EPA continues to evaluate whether new regulations for hexavalent chromium are needed under a new monitoring rule. If the EPA were to issue federal chromium standards in the future, Tampa Bay Water would meet those requirements.