Tag Archive for 'tap water'

Where Does Our Water Come From?

“In observance of Earth Day, Patch offers this two-part series on the sources of our local water supply and the conservation efforts that are underway to use each drop wisely.

“Did you know that more than 60 percent of the water used in the Beach Cities and the Palos Verdes Peninsula is imported from faraway places?

“The West Basin Municipal Water District, which serves the South Bay and other nearby communities, gets the majority of its supply from two sources: the State Water Project’s system of reservoirs and aqueducts delivers water from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta in Northern California and from runoff of melting snow in the Eastern Sierra Nevada; the Colorado River Aqueduct brings water from the Lake Havasu reservoir on the California-Arizona border.

“The remainder comes from a combination of groundwater and recycled water and other local sources, such as water that was originally imported but remains unused as “conserved water.”"

Read more: Patch

California water wars focus on Salton Sea, Colorado River pact

“The evaporating Salton Sea is the flashpoint for the latest dispute in California’s water wars, testing an uneasy alliance of farmers and city dwellers to wean the state from reliance on Colorado River water.

“California officials agreed in 2003 to stop taking more than its share from the Colorado, ensuring that Arizona and Nevada don’t get shortchanged. The plan’s centerpiece called for shifting enough water from the agricultural Imperial Valley to serve nearly 600,000 San Diego area homes.

“The huge farm-to-city water transfer threatened California’s largest lake . More than 200 feet below sea level, the Salton Sea survives on water that seeps through the soil of Imperial Valley farms.

“For seven years, the solution has been to pump enough water into the Salton Sea to offset what was lost to San Diego. The 350-square-mile lake is evaporating at a rate of roughly 450 million gallons a year, but the thinking was to prevent the San Diego transfer from hastening its demise.”

Read more: The Las Vegas Review-Journal

Fluoride in drinking water: Will the EPA get tougher?

fluoride
“Environmental health groups are now looking to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to impose tougher standards on fluoride in drinking water, building on a decision Friday by the federal Department of Health and Human Services to lower the recommended level for the first time in nearly 50 years.

“The HHS move came in the wake of a government study showing that about 2 out of 5 adolescents have tooth streaking or spottiness because of excessive fluoride. In extreme cases, teeth can become pitted.

“The dangers may go beyond cosmetic issues. The EPA released two new reviews of research on fluoride Friday. One study found that prolonged, high intake of fluoride can increase the risk of brittle bones, fractures and crippling bone abnormalities.”

Read more: Los Angeles Times

Tap water kills dozens of fish in Duncanville creek

“City workers spent hours Friday afternoon trying to clean up a massive fish kill on Ten Mile Creek in Duncanville.

“Crews with the cities of Duncanville and Cedar Hill walked along the shore picking up dozens of dead fish.

“Neighbors noticed the creek’s water changing color earlier in the week, but started smelling the problem Friday morning.

“When I came out this morning, I smelled something really strong,” said D.J. McCasland, who has lived on the creek for 15 years. “I walked down here, looked over to the creek, and there were hundreds of fish piled up on the ledge — dead!”

“Although homes in Duncanville noticed the problem, city leaders blame a water main break upstream in neighboring Cedar Hill. On Thursday morning, crews discovered a 16-inch water main break.

“Officials fixed the leak within hours, but they aren’t sure how long the main was spewing chlorinated tap water into the creek.

“Tap water is extremely toxic to fish.”

read more: WFAA

Virginia Tech professor uncovered truth about lead in D.C. water

“Sometimes Don Quixote beats the windmill.”

“It happened for Marc Edwards, a lean, intense Virginia Tech environmental engineering professor. Drawing on what he called his own “world-class stubbornness,” he mounted a six-year campaign that succeeded last week in forcing the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to admit that it had misled the public about the risk of lead in the District’s drinking water.”

“The CDC, which is the nation’s principal public health agency, made the confession in a “Notice to Readers” published in an official weekly bulletin Friday. It came a day after a scathing House subcommittee report said the agency knowingly used flawed and incomplete data when it assured D.C. residents in 2004 that their health hadn’t been hurt by spikes in lead in the drinking water.”

Read more: Washington Post

Mayor: Boston schools open despite huge main break

A worker inspects the water main, Sunday, May ...

“The head of the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority also didn’t shy from stating the magnitude of the problem created when a 10-foot-wide steel pipe burst at a seam Saturday morning. Over the next eight hours, an estimated 65 million gallons spilled into the Charles River and forced officials to tap a reservoir filled with untreated water, potentially contaminating the supply to 750,000 households.

“For the people in the water industry, it is everyone’s worst nightmare: to lose your main transmission linecoming into a metropolitan area,” said MWRA Executive Director Frederick Laskey.”

read more: Associated Press

Bottled and Sold: What’s really in our bottled water

See full size image

“Water Number: More than 100. After months of requests and two Freedom of Information Act requests to the US Food and Drug Administration (which regulates some bottled waters), I got a list of recalls of bottled waters in the U.S. Combined with other research, I ultimately compiled a list of more than 100 bottled water recalls, affecting millions of bottles of water.

“This list (which I will soon post online) includes a remarkable list of contaminants. In addition to the benzene found in Perrier, bottled water has been found to contain mold, sodium hydroxide, kerosene, styrene, algae, yeast, tetrahydrofuran, sand, fecal coliforms and other forms of bacteria, elevated chlorine, “filth,” glass particles, sanitizer, and in my very favorite example, crickets.”

Read more: SF Gate

Growing concern in the water: Alarmed by latest research, the Obama administration is conducting a broad review of toxic weed killer atrazine that could lead to tighter restrictions

Atrazine spraying

“Despite growing health concerns about atrazine, an agricultural weed killer sprayed on farm fields across the Midwest, most drinking water is tested for the chemical only four times a year — so rarely that worrisome spikes of the chemical often go undetected.

“Atrazine has been banned in Europe because it contaminates groundwater, but it remains widely used in the U.S., where the EPA endorsed its continued use as recently as 2003. Federal records show the review was heavily influenced by industry and relied on studies financed by Syngenta, a Swiss-based company that manufactures most of the atrazine sprayed in the U.S.”

read more: Chicago Tribune

Bluewashing: Why the Bottled Water Industry’s EcoFriendly Claims Don’t Hold Water

“Corporations have a financial incentive to hide their environmental impacts from an American public that wants to buy environmentally friendly products. As consumers have been looking for ways to “go green,” corporations have been accused of “greenwashing” — selling products as environmentally responsible when they actually damage the environment. Today, with heightened media attention on the world water crisis, blue is the new green — and corporations appear to be using similar “bluewashing” tactics to obscure their effect on the world’s water.”

read more: food & water watch

Twisted Logic of Privatization: You People Saved Water Last Year — So Rates Are Going Up!

“Several cash strapped US cities have sold off their municipal water systems or at least contracted operations to for-profit companies. (One of the truly odd things about the water market in America is that the biggest players in privatization are European corporations.) Recapping the perverse incentive: conserve water to be “green;” get charged more for what you still use to keep the overseas profit stream flowing.”

read more: AlterNet