In November 2021, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (Iowa DNR) sampled Iowa City's drinking water as part of the State's PFAS action plan. PFAS refers to the family of chemicals known as Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances.

The Environmental Protection Agency has released a health advisory level associated with two PFAS - Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and Perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) - at a combined concentration of 70 ppt (parts per trillion). The results of Iowa City's PFAS samples found no detectable PFOA or PFOS.

The analysis tested for 25 other PFAS chemicals. One, Perfluorobutanoic acid (PFBA), was detectable in Iowa City drinking water at 3 ppt. To imagine one part-per-trillion, picture enough salt to stick to the tip of your pinky finger dissolved in an Olympic swimming pool.

"Our results are very low and not unexpected," said Jonathan Durst, Water Superintendent. "The City will continue to work with the Iowa DNR to monitor PFAS and conduct additional on-site testing. We are committed to providing the highest quality drinking water to our community."

For more information about PFAS, please visit: or

The entire Iowa DNR report on Iowa City's drinking water can be found here.

Date of publication

Tuesday, December 28, 2021