The other day while listening to a podcast, I was reminded about the importance of drinking clean water and getting a good water filter. In the past I have not researched what type of filter to get, I simply bought what was easily available. While researching further, I stumbled on something perhaps more important: the EWG’s* Tap Water Database. The database includes information about drinking water quality for nearly 50,000 water companies or utilities nationwide. “Altogether, EWG’s drinking water quality database includes nearly 30 million test results for 502 contaminants, making it the largest resource of free and openly accessible data on U.S. drinking water.” You can easily look at the results for where you live by entering your zip code.
Some of the results put together by EWG that caught my attention:
250-plus contaminants detected were perfectly legal under the Safe Drinking Water Act but well above levels that authoritative scientific studies have found to pose health risks.
“Environmental Protection Agency has not added a new contaminant to the list of regulated drinking water pollutants in more than 20 years….this means there are no legal limits for the more than 160 unregulated contaminants the tests detected in the nation’s tap water.”
Chromium-6 or hexavalent chromium (the notorious industrial chemical in the film “Erin Brockovich) is unregulated under the Safe Drinking Water Act. It has been detected in drinking water supplies for more than 250 million Americans in all 50 states.
And unfortunately much more! The quick video from EWG below details some of the larger concerns around America’s drinking water.
So what can you do about it? Get a water filter! EWG provides some suggestions for water filters via their site. Fortunately, it seems like most of the basic on the counter water filters do the trick. If any of you have recommendations from your own research, please leave them in the comments below!
While this may be hard to believe, our water supply infrastructure is incredibly old and the use of chemicals to “clean” our water is widely done. Combined with a slow moving national government spells bad news.
Please spread the word. We all rely on water to survive. Let’s make sure all of our friends and family are drinking clean water!
* EWG (Environmental Working Group) is a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to protecting human health and the environment.