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The Five Best and Five Worst Cities for Water Quality

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The Five Best and Five Worst Cities for Water Quality

I have been known to scoff at products that have their first ingredient as water –- until of course I remember that water is my first ingredient. When you take that simple fact into consideration, water quality becomes one of life’s most important issues. While there are numerous water filtration systems on the market, it is good to know the quality of the water actually coming out of your tap. Where you live may make a difference.

There are various criteria regarding documented studies of water quality. The best examples come from non-political or non-promotional studies. Researching the water quality in your city or town is made somewhat easier by requesting an Annual Water Quality Report also known as the Drinking Water Quality Report. These consumer confidence reports must be provided in areas that have public water systems that have at least 15 service connections or serves at least 25 year-round residents.

The following best and worst categories were culled from studies performed between 2008 and 2010. Because criteria vary, so do the lists. The cities listed here appear on several lists and are only intended to give you a general idea.

The Five Best Cities for Water Quality:

1 – Portland, Oregon

2 – San Jose, California

3 – San Francisco, California

4 – Boston, Massachusetts

5 – Louisville, Kentucky

The Five Worst Cities for Water Quality:

1 – Las Vegas, Nevada

2 – Reno, Nevada

3 – Pensacola, Florida

4 – Casper, Wyoming

5 – Concord, New Hampshire

Next: What are the criteria for good water quality?

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12:51AM PST on Dec 8, 2014


12:50AM PST on Dec 8, 2014


12:16AM PST on Dec 8, 2014

Hey nice post man! Thanks for incredible info.

8:15PM PDT on Oct 13, 2011

Great article. Thanks.

5:07AM PDT on Sep 11, 2011

Melbourne Australia has great water but if you go to Adelaide, put a peg on your nose coz it tastes gross...make that double gross!

5:23AM PDT on Sep 7, 2011

Only for Americans...

6:50AM PDT on Sep 5, 2011

Interesting. I wonder if the best cities can compare with the Swedish tap water? =)

5:53PM PDT on Sep 4, 2011


6:43AM PDT on Jul 14, 2011

It would be nice to have had some criteria for the decisions. I cannot use San Francisco water because of the chloramine--not for drinking, bathing or even washing fruit and vegies. Please see for more information.

9:57AM PDT on Jun 30, 2011

I have to wonder how on earth are you measuring "quality". What measurements are involved... when it comes to your rating on San Francisco's noxious tap, I would have to bet you haven't even gotten to something as simple as a taste test. San Francisco tap is poisoned with chloramine which is impossible to filter out and makes it unsuitable even for bathing much less ingestion. In addition to being a toxic combination of ammonia and chlorine (a combination even a D biology or chem student knows not to mix) chloramine presents aerosol inhalation risks, is a very poor disinfectant (according to World Health Organization), kills amphibians (making a water main break an environmental impact event). I think it may be time to consider drawing from a more reliable source. I can never even gag down the semi-filtered water delivered at a restaurant or within a 30 mile radius of SF... my wife was shocked when I drank down the water served at an AppleBee's in Anchorage AK, but as I understand Alaska is now contaminating their own systems with chloramine! I don't know why you'd even write an article without conducting even the most superficial research of your own rather than regurgitation of some government sponsored "studies". Get a clue please!

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