To the Editor:
Do you want to test your well for arsenic? The town of Bar Harbor is working with eighth grade students from Conners Emerson School, students from COA, the MDI Biological Laboratory and Defend Our Health to provide free arsenic testing kits for people in Bar Harbor to test their well water to make sure it’s safe to drink. The goal is to get as many wells in Bar Harbor tested as possible.
Why is making sure your arsenic levels are safe so important? Drinking too much arsenic can cause some major health issues in the future. It has been shown to lead to developmental issues and cancer in the skin, lungs, kidney, bladder and prostate. Maine uses the federal standard of 10 parts per billion (ppb) for public drinking water but other states like New Hampshire have adopted a lower limit of 5 ppb. Defend our Health is funding the testing kits. They are a Portland-based nonprofit whose mission is to protect public health.
If you would like to get a testing kit, they will be available for pick up at Conners Emerson School Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, Oct. 25 through Nov. 1, 10:30 a.m. to noon and 2-2:30 p.m. You can pick up a kit at the municipal building anytime during that week or COA students will be available to drop off and pick up testing kits at your homes.
Please contact Bar Harbor Local Health Officer Mike Gurtler by email at [email protected] or by phone at (207) 288-3329 for more information about the Bar Harbor well water monitoring initiative.
Bodie Tapley, Griffin Cole and Willa Bond
Conners Emerson students