Cadmium and water quality
Cadmium: Cadmium is a non-essential element that diminishes plant growth. It is considered
a potential carcinogen and it has also been shown to cause toxic effects to the kidneys, bone defects,
high blood pressure, and reproductive defects.
Cadmium is widely distributed in the environment at low concentrations, but it can be found in
fairly high concentrations in sewage sludge. Primary industrial uses for cadmium are plating,
battery manufacture, pigments, and plastics.
Criteria: The standard for domestic water supply is <0.01 mg/L. The allowable level for aquatic
life is derived using a formula involving hardness. At a hardness of 100, 0.001 mg/L is