Chemical hazards in drinking-water
Formaldehyde in drinking-water
The Guidelines for Drinking-water Quality Final Task Force Meeting (Geneva, 2003) recommended that formaldehyde be updated as part of the rolling revision process in order to take into consideration inhalation of formaldehyde from drinking-water. A review of the literature has shown that formaldehyde is highly soluble in water with a very low Henry’s law constant, so that it is unlikely to volatilize in water. This is supported by a 1990 experimental study. Although formaldehyde can occur in drinking-water and may leach from polyacetal fittings, its toxicity is very low.
Revised background document and summary statement for first addendum to Third Edition
Progress to date
These are now available as drafts for public review and comments.
The detailed review document [pdf 82kb]
A summary statement [pdf 16kb]
Comments on the draft would be welcome and should be submitted by e-mail before 10 March 2005.
Submit your comments [pdf 96kb]
Other publications of interest
Chemical safety of drinking-water: Assessing priorities for risk management
Protecting groundwater for health: managing the quality of drinking-water sources
- Managing surface waters for health (in preparation)