Category Archive: Water

EPA Acts on Tap Water Contaminants

Earlier this year, IsTapWaterSafe.com, a project of the Center for Accountability in Science, took out an ad in the L.A. Times and launched a petition demanding the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) release its plans for Contaminant Candidate List 5.  The Contaminant Candidate List, or CCL, is a list of contaminants that are not currently subject to any drinking water regulations. The process of building CCL’s asks for public nomination of chemicals or other materials for consideration. Once received, the EPA will review and determine if the contaminants should be chosen for regulation. The EPA has previously published four CCL’s containing hundreds...

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Schools and Child Care Centers Plagued by Lead in Tap Water

Too much exposure to lead can harm anyone, but it is especially dangerous for the developing brains of young children.  These facts make the latest report out of North Carolina particularly disturbing. The North Carolina Division for Public Health in partnership with RTI International tested the tap water of 2,129 of the state’s 4,409 licensed child care centers and found that nearly one in ten facilities had unsafe levels of lead. In North Carolina, that means as many as 20,000 children were exposed to lead-laced water in their childcare facilities.  Researchers only considered that the pipes contained lead at rates higher than...

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Winter Storms Expose Dire Conditions of Tap Water Infrastructure

Millions of Americans were left without safe tap water because of an unexpected, record-breaking winter storm.  The winter storm brought ice, snow, and freezing temperatures across much of the United States with Texas, Mississippi, and Louisiana suffering some of the worst damage. In Texas alone, 15 million people were without safe water. Many more were left without electricity as heavy ice destroyed power lines and halted many wind turbines.  The freezing temperatures exposed the crumbling water infrastructure that has been in need of repair for decades. As temperatures dropped, many water mains froze and eventually burst. When the pipes burst, the water...

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“Biofilm” Sludge in Tap Water Leads to Thousands of Deaths per Year: CDC Report

If you have a sensitive stomach and drink tap water, you may want to stop reading here. A new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that biofilm -- a sludge coating consisting of bacteria, fungi, amoebas, and other microorganisms -- is lining more than six million miles of tap water pipes in the United States. Sarah Collier, an analytic epidemiologist at the CDC who led the study, described it best in an interview with CNN: “If you've ever felt that slimy film on your teeth when you haven't brushed in a while, that's a biofilm,” Collier explained. “Biofilms tend to form anywhere...

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The Hidden Dangers of Tap Water

Tap water in the United States is supposed to be safe to consume, but the reality is that American tap water is riddled with contaminants including fecal matter, lead, pesticides, and other potentially harmful substances. To raise awareness about this problem, today we are running a full-page advertisement in the Los Angeles Times warning Californians about the hidden dangers lingering in their tap water. We’re directing people to IsTapWaterSafe.com, a site we created to host tap water testing data as well as boil water advisories. While there is plenty of data available to understand the hidden dangers in tap water, the Environmental Protection Agency has been...

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Teen Named Time Magazine’s Kid of the Year for Inventing Tap Water Test

A 15-year-old inventor was named Time Magazine’s “Kid of the Year” after she created a device that can detect lead in tap water.  Gitanjali Rao, a Colorado teen, began her research to develop a lead detecting device when she was just 10 years old. She studied carbon nanotube sensor technology at the Denver Water quality research lab to analyze how chemicals and other impurities can be sensed in water. Her early research led to her developing a sensor that can detect lead in tap water.  Rao’s research on water sensors began five years ago, around the same time that the residents of...

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What do you know about Tap Water?

Snoop Dogg’s Half-Baked New Ad

Snoop Dogg, the washed-up 90s rapper known for his marijuana habit, has a new gig: Doing ads for SodaStream, a company that provides a home carbonation device for water and other beverages. Snoop released a video advertisement for SodaStream arguing that people should switch to a carbonation machine so they can stop drinking soda or seltzer out of plastic bottles. “I don’t need to start a nature relief fund to help save the planet from plastic waste. I simply enjoy fresh, sparkling water,” the rapper says. That’s one way to look at it. Another way might be: Enjoy some lead and fecal bacteria with...

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National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week

This week is National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week. This annual campaign is a call to action for individuals, organizations, state and local officials to bring awareness to lead poisoning prevention and reduce childhood exposure. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates anywhere between 6 to 10 million homes still have water that passes through lead pipes. Children six years old or younger are at considerable risk of long-term damage if exposed to lead. Even from low levels of exposure, children can experience behavioral and learning issues, hearing problems, slowed growth, or even a decreased IQ level. But lead doesn’t only affect children. If exposed to lead, pregnant women...

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New Report: Lead Levels in Tap Water High Enough to Harm Infants and Children

A new study in conjunction with Virginia Tech reveals various levels of lead in tap water across the United States. 97 households were tested just outside of New Orleans and 688 others across the country. Nearly 80 percent of homes had at least some levels of lead detected in their tap water, with 40 percent exceeding the recommended limit by the American Academy of Pediatrics.  Though it may come as a shock, lead in tap water continues to be an issue throughout the U.S. Even with lead pipes outlawed in 1986, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that anywhere between 6...

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