What is nitrate?
- a component of all living things
- occurs naturally in soil and water
- an important part of the nitrogen cycle that is present and harmless in food and water.
- forms when microorganisms break down decaying plants, fertilizers, and manure.
What are the health effects of nitrogen?
- thyroid disorders
- blue baby syndrome
- birth defects
- nitrite-induced methemoglobinemia
- sheep, cattle, and young animals are also susceptible to nitrate poisoning.
What are the sources of nitrate?
- septic systems
- animal wastes
- industrial wastes
- food processing wastes
Source: Idaho department of water resources