“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 uprisings 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. That’s 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.