Erie, PA


Erie, PA

The City of Erie is home to an estimated 97,369 residents, and it’s located in Erie County, PA.

This report will help you become better acquainted with Erie and the surrounding area by addressing the following questions:

  • Are there any hazardous sites in Erie County, PA?
  • How clean is the air in Erie County, PA?
  • What’s the average radon level for homes in Erie County, PA?
  • Is the water in Erie County, PA safe to drink?

Hazardous Sites near Erie, PA

There are two Superfund sites in Erie County, PA. Superfund sites, like Mill Creek Dump in Erie, PA, are areas that have been contaminated with hazardous substances. If not for the cleanup efforts orchestrated by the EPA, these sites could endanger people living in nearby communities.

The EPA uses the Hazardous Ranking System (HRS) to quantify the risk a contaminated site poses to human health and the environment. Sites assigned HRS scores of 28.5 or greater qualify for placement on the National Priorities List (NPL), and are eligible to receive federal funding for cleanup efforts.

Before the EPA deletes a site from the NPL, it conducts reviews to ensure the cleanup was sufficient. As a result, some sites remain on the active site list long after cleanup activities are complete.

For more information about the Superfund sites located in the Erie, PA area, be sure to review the map and background information provided below:


Map Legend:

42049

A. Mill Creek Dump (HRS Score: 49)

The Mill Creek Dump site, a former freshwater wetland used as a dump for foundry sands, solvents, waste oils, and other industrial and municipal wastes, is located in Erie, PA.

Contaminants found at the Mill Creek Dump site include:

  • Arsenic
  • Benzene
  • Cadmium
  • Chloroform
  • Chromium
42049

B. Lord-Shope Landfill (HRS Score: 39)

The Lord-Shope Landfill site is located in Girard Township, PA.

Contaminants found at the Lord-Shope Landfill site include:

  • Arsenic
  • Barium
  • Benzene
  • Cadmium
  • Chromium

Air Quality in the Erie, PA Area

The two most widespread forms of air pollution are ozone (smog) and particle pollution (soot). Exposure to these harmful pollutants, for even just a short period, can have adverse effects on your health.

Thanks to data collected by air monitoring equipment located across the country, the American Lung Association (ALA) is able to assess and track our air quality using three metrics:

  • Ozone
  • Short-term Particle Pollution
  • Year-round Particle Pollution

In their 2019 annual report, the ALA rated the air quality in Erie County, PA as follows:

Ground-Level
Ozone Pollution

Grading Scale: A-F

Short-Term
Particle Pollution

Grading Scale: A-F

Year-Round
Particle Pollution

Grading Scale: Pass/Fail

Radon Levels in Erie, PA Area

Air quality inside your home can be impacted by a number of factors, including the presence of hazardous substances in building materials (asbestos, lead, formaldehyde, etc.) and local radon levels.

Radon is a naturally occurring gas you cannot see or smell. It can build up inside your home and negatively impact your indoor air quality as well as your health.

To provide a guideline, the EPA assigned one of three zones to each U.S. county and county equivalent:

  • Zone 1 (higher radon levels)
  • Zone 2 (moderate levels)
  • Zone 3 (lower levels)

Indoor radon readings in Erie County, PA are expected to average from 2 to 4 picocuries per liter (pCi/L), so the county has been assigned EPA Radon Zone 2.

EPA Radon Zone

According to the EPA, you should consider acting to reduce your home's radon level if it measures between 2 and 4 pCi/L, so if you're contemplating buying a home in Erie, PA, you should have a radon test performed.

Water Quality in Erie, PA Area

In accordance with the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA), the EPA sets regulatory limits for drinking water contaminants known to cause adverse health effects.

The following Erie County, PA water provider(s) violated the maximum allowable level for one or more regulated contaminants:

Filter ValueWater SystemContaminantHealth Effects
42049Edwards Mobile Home ParkNitrateInfants below the age of six months who drink water containing nitrate in excess of the MCL could become seriously ill and, if untreated, may die. Symptoms include shortness of breath and blue-baby syndrome. 
42049Erie City Water AuthorityTTHMLiver, kidney, or central nervous system problems; increased risk of cancer 
42049Girard Boro Water DeptNitrateInfants below the age of six months who drink water containing nitrate in excess of the MCL could become seriously ill and, if untreated, may die. Symptoms include shortness of breath and blue-baby syndrome. 
42049North East Borough Water DeptTTHMLiver, kidney, or central nervous system problems; increased risk of cancer 
42049North East Township WaterTTHMLiver, kidney, or central nervous system problems; increased risk of cancer 
42049Summit Township Water AuthoritTTHMLiver, kidney, or central nervous system problems; increased risk of cancer 
42049Union City Municipal AuthorityTotal Haloacetic Acids (HAA5)Increased risk of cancer 
42049Union City Municipal AuthorityTTHMLiver, kidney, or central nervous system problems; increased risk of cancer 
42049Wattsburg Boro WtpArsenicSkin damage or problems with circulatory systems, and may have increased risk of getting cancer
42049West Springfield Mobile Hm PkNitrateInfants below the age of six months who drink water containing nitrate in excess of the MCL could become seriously ill and, if untreated, may die. Symptoms include shortness of breath and blue-baby syndrome. 

In addition to setting enforceable standards for harmful contaminants, the EPA also established guidelines to assist public water providers in managing the taste, odor and color of their drinking water.

To find out more about what’s in your drinking water, contact your utility company and request a copy of the latest Consumer Confidence Report.


Sources and Methods

Hazardous Sites: Identified using a report from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), hazardous sites detailed on trendingtowns.com represent sites contained on the National Priorities List (NPL) as of November 25, 2019.  The NPL is the list of national priorities among the known releases or threatened releases of hazardous substances, pollutants, or contaminants throughout the United States and its territories.  All site-related data was sourced from the EPA.

Air Quality: Grades for ozone, short-term particle pollution, and year-round particle pollution were obtained from State of the Air 2019, a report compiled by the American Lung Association.

Radon Zones: Radon zone designations were obtained using a public use dataset provided by the EPA (September 11, 2019).

Water Quality: Drinking water violation data was sourced from the Safe Drinking Water Information System (SDWIS), a public use database provided by the EPA.  The dataset included violations submitted to the database as of the third quarter of 2019.

Paul

I’ve moved several times over the years, so I know just how stressful it can be to relocate. I want to help put your mind at ease. That’s why I research and write about all the things I think you should consider when moving to a new town.

Recent Content