BELLEVUE — An eastern Iowa city is planning a $1.7 million treatment plant to remove the unsafe levels of radium from the city water supply.
Officials in Bellevue hope to complete the work by late next year. The Bellevue Municipal Utilities board approved building the facility in August 2016 after unsafe radium levels were detected in the water for four consecutive quarters. City Administrator Loras Herrig says the radium is a natural occurrence.
The approval to build was contingent on a state loan that’s since been awarded. It is 75 percent forgivable.
Officials say Bellevue’s water tests consistently show radium levels above or near the state’s maximum. Health experts say prolonged exposure to high levels of radium can cause anemia, cataracts, fractured teeth, cancer and death.