Volatile Organic Compounds
VOCs include chemicals like dichloromethane, an industrial solvent; trichloroethylene, used in septic system cleaners; and tetrachloroethylene, used by dry cleaners. Because VOCs are found in a vast array of products like gasoline, solvents, cleaners, paints, inks, dyes, and pesticides, they reside in every corner of our country. If they are spilled or leak from a defective container, they can easily make their way into our water supply. The EPA estimates that VOCs are present in one-fifth of American water supplies. Long-term exposure to VOCs can damage the liver or increase the risk of cancer.