Aberdeen asking residents on input regarding fluoride in city water

The Aberdeen City Council would like to hear from the public regarding the possibility of removing fluoride from the City’s drinking water.

Residents and water users are being asked to take a short survey regarding any concerns they have with the city adding fluoride to the local water.

This is not the first time the discussion has been posed during council meetings over the last 15 years. At a recent council meeting, Grays Harbor County Public Health provided an overview of the recommended benefits of the addition after the question was raised.

The survey is open through July 31.

According to the Washington Department of Health, Washington State does not require public water systems to add fluoride to drinking water. That decision to fluoridate is a local community decision. 

Map of Systems that Deliver Fluoridated Water

Image from Washington State Department of Health

Map of Naturally Occurring Fluoride by County

Image from Washington State Department of Health

Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 246-290-460, Fluoridation of drinking water, sets the allowed fluoridation concentration range for water systems that add fluoride to their water for dental health benefits. 

According to Tao Sheng Kwan-Gett, MD MPH, Chief Science Officer at the Office of Health and Science within the WA Department of Health,

“The Department of Health supports community water fluoridation as a sound, population-based public health measure. The decision to add fluoride to a public water system is made by the local community. The department encourages communities to begin and maintain optimal fluoride levels for health benefits in drinking water systems.” adding that “The Surgeon General of the United States and over one hundred national and international organizations endorse water fluoridation. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recognized fluoridation of drinking water as one of ten great public health achievements of the twentieth century. “

During the 2023 Legislative Session, House Bill 1251 was passed to set requirements for public water systems that want to start adding fluoride, or systems that would like to discontinue adding fluoride to their drinking water. 

Starting in July 2023, public water systems considering starting or discontinuing fluoridation of their water on a continuing basis must notify their customers and he Office of Drinking Water, at least 90 days prior to a vote or decision on the matter. 

After a community makes the decision to fluoridate its drinking water, officials provide technical assistance. 

The City Council will make a decision on the removal of, or the continuation of, fluoridation in October.

Survey Link: