Kids drink more water for their size than adults. The majority of the water comes from the tap, and standards instituted by Congress govern the quality of the water, included in the Safe Drinking Water Act of 1974. Subsequent laws have set clean drinking water criteria for chemicals which were known to be in some water supplies. In his DIY Guide to Home Water Treatment, Ed Carmichael of CleanerSofterWater.com describes the quality standards for water used in a typical American home.
Now the drinking water in the United States is one of the safest in the world, although problems can happen with time. Breaches in water safety standards are most likely to occur in smaller systems that serve less than a thousand individuals. Also, bear in mind that private wells aren’t federally regulated and need to be analyzed for nitrates and other environmental toxins if relevant.
Contaminants that can cause sickness in the drinking water include nitrates, germs, human-made compounds, heavy metals, radioactive pollutants, and by-products of the disinfecting procedure.
Although bottled water may be bought in markets, many brands are using regular tap water that has been filtered then bottled for sale. Bottled water is usually much more expensive than tap water, and unless there are known contamination issues on your community’s water source, it’s not necessary. Bottled water may also contain undesirable compounds that come from the plastic and seep into the water, and using bottled water creates a large amount of plastic trash.
To assure that your child is drinking clean water, you can check the water quality by calling the county health department, the state environment agency, or the Environmental Protection Agency’s Safe Drinking Water Hotline (1-800-426-4791). Local water companies are mandated to report what’s in the water every year. Well, drinking water ought to be tested yearly to make sure it is within safe limits.
Other guidelines include:
- Use cold water for drinking and cooking. Contaminants can collect in water heaters.
- If you’re concerned about the standard of your plumbing, run the faucet for 2 minutes every morning before utilizing the water for cooking or drinking. This will flush the pipes and reduce the likelihood that contaminants will end up in the water that you consume.
- Has well water analyzed for nitrates before providing it to babies under one-year-old?
- Drinking water which might be infected with germs should be boiled and then allowed to cool before drinking. Boil for no longer than 1 minute. However, it’s important to remember that boiling water kills bacteria and other germs; it does not eliminate toxic chemicals. If you do not like the taste or odor of your tap water, filters made with activated carbon will remove the off-taste or odor. Such filters may also remove undesirable substances without removing fluoride that prevents tooth decay.
Lead-Based Drinking Water Cleaners Risk
Safe, Potable, clean drinking water is vital to the wellbeing of all children.
However development has been made by state and federal governments to decrease water pollution with the Clean Water Act (1972) and guarantee tap water security through the Safe Drinking Water Act (1974), current water contamination events throughout the USA highlight the fact that children, especially children who live and learn in high poverty communities, might be subjected to lead-tainted water in their dwellings and schools.
The EPA warns that vulnerability to even low levels of lead can produce developmental and educational issues.
What You Can Do To Have Clean Drinking Water
To Prevent Lead Exposure
- Discover whether there is lead-based paint in your dwelling. Houses constructed before 1986 are also more likely to have lead pipes, solder, and fixtures.
- Consult your child’s school district to investigate the school’s water for lead pollution. Many schools in the U.S. are old and were constructed when lead pipes, solder, or fittings were permitted to be used.
If You or Your Child Are Exposed
- Make an appointment with your family doctor for testing & treating your child
- Contact your local health department
Court Case Sets Precedents: Huge Financial Penalty Thanks To Concerned Citizens
Sometimes, unbeatable anti-pollution winners should get their toes wet. Really, in contaminated bays. Long on-demand yet short on money for expensive consultants, clean water winners across the Gulf of Mexico’s Lavaca Bay (Texas) declined to accept that business power and government indifference could publicly poison their backyard. A successful court struggle to prevent Formosa Plastics’ continuing illegal wastewater discharges of plastic pollution to the Bay and surrounding waterways demanded hard, extensive evidence.
Thus a dedicated group of environmental heroes shot 6000 videos and photos as they systematically tracked a 20-mile area, such as 13 Formosa outflow dumps. They gathered 30 containers of 2,428 samples of illegally discharged plastic powder and pellets released by one of the dirtiest plastics manufacturers anywhere. Bingo: grit plus low-tech solutions generate Texas-size breakthroughs.
The information gathered by the people convinced U.S. Judge Kenneth Hoyt to make a precedent-setting judgment in Texas known for looking through their fingers at companies that broke the law. The judge discovered:
- Formosa for years violated both federal Clean Water Act and Texas environmental legislation, labeling the firm a “serial offender” guilty of “extensive, historic and repetitive “wastewater contamination;
- prohibited further toxic releases;
- called grossly lax Texas environmental authorities; and
- Framed the remedy/penalty stage, with a maximum of $184 million fine showings for Formosa’s 1,885 (!) invasions.
It is a joke that before they only paid $121,000 of pocket change as penalties from the state environmental bureau which was levied against this condemned “serial offender”. This shocking act of justice happened, per Judge Hoyt, since “these witnesses provided detailed, credible testimony concerning plastics discharged by Formosa,” especially innumerable pea-size plastic pellets and equally harmful toxins.
The Clean Water Act limits anything outside “trace amounts,” and that fastened it, verifying Formosa as a monumental, are a lawbreaking polluter. The game, set, and match!
Bravo For Persistence
Fighting powerful, wealthy, industrial polluters in a state notorious for mirage-like “criteria” isn’t for the faint of heart. Nor the thin-skinned. Nor those who lack enormous staying strength. We are discussing a three-decade work when famous Texas rabble-rouser and Codepink co-founder Diane Wilson (boat captain, shrimper, writer, visionary, demonstration artist, and periodic guest in local jails) decided Formosa Plastics needed to stop harming her favorite backyard, the bay after famous for high quality, clean shrimp she harvested.
It had objected, raised consciousness no right, ethically, morally, or legally, to sicken her neighbors. So she and co-plaintiffs in the San Antonio Bay Estuarine Waterkeeper registered the suit.
“It’s wonderful, even astonishing to see justice being done,” said Diane Wilson, who spearheads the coalition, allied with the legendary, international Waterkeeper’s Alliance and the Texas Rio GrandeLegal Aid, Inc. (TRLA). “We have fought for so long to protect the beauty and health of our natural environment. We’re one step closer to making it happen. Not only is this a win, it’s a big win.”
“This is a victory for the environment and for citizens using the Clean Water Act to protect their rivers, streams, and bays,” said Amy R. Johnson, TRLA’s lead counsel. “The judge found our evidence to be very convincing.”
For 30 years, Diane and locals traced the weak correlations between Formosa’s poisonous air and water emissions vs. plastic employees concern over brain tumors, community buy-out of houses, and commercial fishermen’s plight from destroyed fisheries. That was not enough.
They objected, increased awareness, and attempted legal struggles, petitions and ingenious activism (such as Diane losing her fishing boat, various hunger strikes, also challenging a prison sentence). That helped but still was not enough.
What eventually broke through was the powerful combination of legal art — and scads of powerful evidence, no honest judge could avoid. Now precedence is set.
Add the upcoming excellent news that enormous financial penalties will induce Formosa to cure toxic outflows. Moreover, what transpired here can protect other Davids throughout fighting safe, poisonous Goliaths.
Massive polluters usually seize remote, under-populated areas, delivering permanent jobs to desperate counties. They intimidate media and critics who shrink from criticizing.
Despite its ironic title, the nation “environmental quality” commission condones lawbreaking which privatizing profits while “interacting” dreadful “externalities.” Translation: pocket the advantages, maintain officials at bay, and handoff high loss mitigation expenses to the general populace — when and, when at all attainable.
Despite this constitutional bombshell, Diane’s polluted backyard will never be the same. What the EPA Toxic Release Inventory once rated as America’s “most toxic” place still applies for, beyond plastic contamination, a now-defunct Alcoa plant generated a mercury superfund site, with such high levels fish, are unsafe to eat.
In the late 20th C, Calhoun County provided the perfect trifecta for the taking: gloomy economics, low-population, and ideal placement beside the Gulf, an easy waste landfill. Formosa is but one of several polluters, and Lavaca Bay continue to suffer.
Does any pristine area deserve to be a garbage dump as its well situated near the water and with no powerful friends in high areas?
Principal Gulf players, such as Marc Yaggi, Executive Director of Waterkeeper Alliance, is already watching to the following encounter:
Formosa Plastics, a petrochemical monster, profited more than $900 million in 2017, now projecting a $9.4 billion plant in St. James Parish [Louisiana]. With having more than sufficient money to spend in clean technologies, Formosa is a famous offender [now required to] do the best thing — make investments in their wastewater and stormwater systems and reduce the waste they produce.
The group of Diane has created a GoFundMe page to fund their continued pursuit of law-breaking polluters. Throw in a couple of bucks — I just did, and they’ll gain the best leverage. San Antonio Bay Waterkeeper — FORMOSA GAME OVER! We all want clean drinking water for our communities and environment.