"Every 5 minutes in the U.S. over 2 million plastic bottles are used,
Gone Un-recycled, these plastic wastes will take up to 1000 years to properly START decomposing. What about the adverse effects it has on our ecology?"
Those heart punching details were summarized to me by a mentor a few months ago. As I studied and pondered continuously on the amount of bottled water consumed everyday, I being a hydrologist decided to write this short article about the 3 Dangers everyone Ought to know about their Bottled water.
Danger #1: SOURCE
Numerous reports have made mention of the dangerous substances that have been found and still could be found in the bottled water we buy from our local grocery stores. The sad news is there are no federal regulations regarding the bottled water you buy. As a matter of fact, you and I could start our own bottled water company tomorrow and we would be just fine. May even make a decent profit. The FDA (food and drug administration) has very little authority over bottled water brands. There is a requirement for bottled water companies to test for contaminants and other problems, however the results are not disclosed to the public or community. Doesn't sound very safe does it? Because this leaves room for dishonest and false advertisers to sell you your city water from their home faucet under the label "Pure Spring Water" or "Natures Water" or "XYZ Water". And there are many companies out there that sell us very unclean water in plastic bottles and some have been caught by the federal regulations but the most they can be fined for is false advertising. They're not fined for any health hazards or exposures they might have done to the local americans. Of the many companies that have bad source water problems is Your Walmart store. The EWG (environmental working group) exposed walmart and giant water for their high toxicity and composition of dangerous cancer causing contaminants. These researchers intent to sue these companies for selling bottled water that contained five times more chlorine byproducts.
Danger #2: Quality
Now obviously we have mentioned about bad water sources and those will definitely not give us the water quality that we seek for ourselves and our families. So, You as a consumer ask yourself the question, How Clean is the Bottled Water from a reliable source? Well, it still isn't very much better. When water is tested for TDS (totally dissolved solids), pure water or really clean water is ranged from 0-15 ppm (part per million). We as hydrologist wouldn't settle for anything greater than 5ppm as a TDS reading, nevertheless a reading between 0-15 is very much well within good quality. Now some states have different requirements on what they consider as your maximum contamination level when it comes to totally dissolved solids but ask yourself, What should YOUR contamination level be? The federal limit is 80 ppm. You can always visit your local municipal office and pick up your state or city evaluations on what your city water ranks on. But in the case of bottled water, it was suprising to me and my staff how much dissolved substances are found in bottled water even from the top name brands. The Nestle water had up to 74ppm of dissolved substances, Ozarka was about 23ppm, and others in 35ppm and some in the very very good range of 2ppm and 3ppm (Kroger water and Aquafina). This is not a marketing article for any of these stores (because i'm not partnered with either) however this is just to bring to your mindset the fact that bottled water is not as pure as people may think. You may be better of getting a household water purifier. Again you'd have to do a good research on what products would work best for you and what they cost, but some are really cost efficient and cheap. We usually recommend these systems not only for the sake of source and quality but also for my next point...
Danger #3: Destruction to Ecosystem and Your Life
As quoted earlier, it takes about 1000 years for a plastic bottle to begin to decompose. The problem of recycling is still a challenge to our society. Majority of the population does not recycle and not every state is hard on its citizens to recycle their plastics. Destruction to the ecosystem would not be all over the news and internet if the recycling campaigns were successful. But they're not, and more plastics are being thrown out in the streets and lakes and rivers. I don't know if your like me but Recycling is my New Year's Resolution every year. With less and less people recycling, and more and more demand for plastic bottle manufacturing, what do you think will happen to our planet in 10 years? or 20 years? So bottled water is not the solution to living a healthier YOU in a safer community. Thats why it is better to buy water bottles and just refill them with your pure water from home. If usage of plastic bottles decreases, demand will also decrease, and hence manufacturing.
Bisphenol A or BPA is one the largest volume of chemicals produced (over 6 billion pounds produced every year) is a plastic containing product. Most plastic water bottles are made from this chemical. Hence the trouble is the final products always tend to contain BPA traces. So far the only studies affirming the dangers of exposure of humans to BPA has been with men. Some reports have affirmed that BPA is in fact related to erectile dysfunction. However, laboratory animal studies for the John Hopkins School of Public Health have shown that animals exposed to considerably amounts of BPA from infancy have incurred brain damages and behavioral abnormalities. So, if you must have bottled water, there are BPA free plastic bottles out there that you can purchase. But if you can help it, avoid buying bottled water at all cost. FOR YOU OWN PROTECTION.
So to recap:- Bottled water has three main dangers (lots more we could talk about) and those are
1-Source of the water in the bottle; with little regulation we could be drinking anything and we are not provided results or data for what the water contains
2-Quality. Even the bottled water from reliable sources is still not as purified sometimes as would a home water treatment do for probably at the same price, if not less.
3-Destruction to our beautiful planet and to YOUR health. Takes too long for a plastic bottle to decompose, and some plastic bottles contain leaches of BPA into the water they contain, BAD...really BAD. Plus though they may be BPA free plastic bottles out there, we don't usually take time to check and failure to do so just exposes You and Your family to health hazards.
What a useful post, Its a good informative post. I like this so much. This tips are so useful for me. I like to share some information about water filter system, A water filter is installed under the sink. It gets water from under the sink from the cold water line, and heated water is connected to a different countertop faucet. These are popular because the purifiers are not sitting on top of the countertop. By the water filter not being on the top of the counter it does not get in the way or have tubes connecting to the sink faucet.
Thanks for this nice sharing.
Turn this post into a Hub -great information here !!
Fabulous article! The pacific garbage patch is what convinced never to buy a water bottle again. I like that your article mentions that the quality of water is unregulated. ....There is thick patches of plastic soup in our oceans....
Local water supplies (municipal, well water, etc.) vary considerably in purity. I'm sure we've all read horror stories about contaminated water supplies causing sickness and death in various communities.
With all the crap and chemicals that get dumped in landfill sites and elsewhere, it's no wonder it makes its' way into what would otherwise be clean springs and rivers (ground filtration notwithstanding). It's a constant challenge to keep the water pure, and free of contaminants.
The best thing we can do is avoid bottled water (you shouldn't re-use those store-bought plastic bottles for drinking anyway). If you need to carry drinking water around with you, use a proper BPA-free re-usable container (stainless steel perhaps).
Install a high quality filter in your home (remember to change the filters regularly).
BPA-free re-usable containers are the best ways to go. High quality filters do provide a better service. Thats definitely another article i have in progress. "5 Mistakes People Make When Buying a HouseHold Water Treatment System"
If you abroad and your body is unfamiliar with the mineral combinations in foreign water then it could give you very bad runny poops... it could in the worst case scenarios kill you. I make no apology for investing in bottled water abroad.
It is however unfair to place blame on drinkers of bottled water, what about drinkers of Coca-Cola or Pepsi? Seeing as this is effectively flavoured water and also comes in plastic bottles. Why should bottled water be any more damaging than bottled fizzy drinks?
Seeing as Coca-Cola can descale a toilet, I would suggest that bottled water is a better option that fizzy. Unless you can show me bottled water which has the same eroding qualities as household bleach.
You are very correct! The soda plastic bottles do just as bad of a damage to our ecosystem and environment. And you are correct, these drinks can very much harm us too.
These beverages are choices we make to supplement our thirst. These beverages cannot provide the essential necessity our body cells need to function properly, no matter to what volume we consume them. As a matter of fact, the consumption rate of these flavoured drinks increase our body's desire for natural and pure water. This brings a balance to our entire body's buffer system.
Yes, bottled water is definitely better than sodas and flavoured carbonated drinks. And yes, even better is purer water, that can be bottled at home with a greater peace of mind.
Boiling is good! Keep doing that.
With time if you can purify or remove things from your water that would be best! Because boiling kills germs and bacteria but does not remove excess chlorine, trihalomethanes or any chronic illness causing substances.
You know this probably should be in a hub. I can sympathize with wanting to get the word out but this forum thread will eventually die out, where as a hub could potentially bring in readers for a long time to come. Get this info in a hub, then post the link in appropriate places, eco blogs spring to mind
We no longer buy bottled water. A good faucet filter, or, as someone mentioned before - boiling would do the trick.
BTW, what do you think about distilled water?
We've been using faucet filter for about 5 years now,
Great hub. When we go out, especially on long trips, we always bring along our own water bottles and we have encouraged other people to make it a habit too.
very detailed info and you should have made a hub out of this!
Thank you for sharing that information. I'm planning to buy a faucet filter next week. Is there a specific brand/type that I have to buy or any will do?
Numerous studies have revealed that there is no difference in quality between bottled water and tap water in the U.S. Bottled water is so destructive for the environment, and more expensive than gasoline; ridiculous!
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