I developed this web site to provide a
comprehensive resource for anyone searching for information about
the safety and quality of their drinking water.
|Harmful Contaminants That Could Be In Your
Drinking Water (view)
(lead, chlorine, disinfection byproducts, cryptosporidia, giardia, bacteria, endocrine disrupters, pesticides, fluoride, etc.)
|Health Effects of Drinking Harmful Water Contaminants
(with an emphasis on children and pregnancy)
|What's The Best Drinking Water
Purification Method For You? (view)
(filtration, reverse osmosis, distillation, bottled water, KDF, emergency treatment, etc.)
(Check out these Four Steps to help you select a water treatment method)
|Drinking Water Scams
Other Altered Water
How To Spot Scams)
(Beware of product claims to alter water's structure or energy & provide greater health benefits)
Coke and Pepsi bottle municipal tap water as "Dasani" and "Aquafina"
and sell it to us at twice the cost of gasoline. Bottle water is a
triumph of perceived need over reason--the greatest marketing coup in history.
Doonesbury comic strip
Drink healthy water, drink it responsibly and save.
I have distilled the results of many
hours of research into the discussions and the lists of drinking
water related sites on the pages indexed to the right. I hope that the
information here will be helpful in your search for answers to
this important health issue.
Although this site discusses contaminants found in water from both municipal water companies and from private wells, the treatment methods discussed, are mostly Point of Use (POU) - water is treated at the point where it will be used for drinking, cooking, etc. Many private well water problems, bacteria, iron, heavy metals, pH imbalances, etc., need to be treated either at the well, or as the water enters the home and must be customized for a particular situation. I do not go into much detail about these treatment methods, but I provide references to some sites that do. I try to provide only authoritative web references.
Sites you will find referenced here include:
|Government sites, like the Environmental Protection Agency, The National Library of Medicine and the The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.|
|Environmental organizations, like the National Resource Defense Council, Safe Drinking Water Foundation and the Environmental Working Group.|
|Water industry groups and treatment facilities, like NSF International, the American Water Works Association, the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies, Denver Water, National Environmental Services Center and the National Drinking Water Clearinghouse.|
|University based cooperative extension services and research groups, like the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service, University of Illinois Extension and the University of Nebraska Lincoln Extension (publications) and the Purdue Extension.|
|Media publications, like Scientific American, Popular Science, National Public Radio and various newspaper articles.|
|Liquid Assets: The Story of Our Water Infrastructure - Out of sight, out of mind. That's the situation with the drinking water and water treatment systems in the United States. These systems ó some in the ground for more than 100 years ó provide a critical public health function and are essential for economic development and growth. These aging systems have not been maintained, and some estimates suggest this is the single largest public works endeavor in our nationís history. This 90 minute documentary is an essential introduction to anyone who drinks municipal water. Read the synopsis, watch the trailer then check it out from your library or find a way to watch it online - We watched it on Netflix.|
focus on lead as it relates to pregnancy and
(Prompted by two questions I received in one week) If you are are just browsing water issues and are not in the high risk category for lead poisoning (pregnant or have a young child), but you know someone who is pregnant or has young children, please suggest they read this information as soon as possible!
Reader's Digest Magazine (2/08), Time Magazine (8/9/07)
National Geographic Magazine (2/06), NPR (4/4/08)
Summary: Bottled water is no better regulated and not necessarily any safer than most tap water, and although bottle labels often portray the source water as originating in pure, exotic locations, over 25% of bottled water (including many top name brands) comes from municipal sources. Bottled water costs consumers hundreds to thousands of times more than tap water. Bottle manufacture and water treatment use resources and create waste products. Transporting the full bottles to the store uses resources and creates waste. An estimated 90% of the billions of water bottles produced in a year wind up in land fills.
Watch The Story Of Bottled Water: An educational, 8 minute exposť on the manufactured demand for bottled water.
(Read more about bottled water here)
|Water Lead-Levels Misrepresented: Dozens of the nation's largest drinking-water utilities have tried to hide lead contamination and failed to correct problems, the Washington Post reported Tuesday. The newspaper analyzed data from 65 large water systems in the United States and found that high lead levels were concealed from regulators. (NPR, All Things Considered)|
common themes in the 1996, 2002 and 2004 stories below
Houston Chronicle series exploring the safety of the nation's tap water and explaining the dangers threatening our water and what communities can do to protect it. (October 1996) The newspaper has retained the original articles, for which I am glad, but removed the high-level links and index, for which I am NOT glad. I attempted to recreate links to the original stories since.
U.S. News and World Report on Drinking Water (August 4, 2002)
The coming water crisis (by Marianne Lavelle & Joshua Kurlantzick) Many billions of dollars will be needed to quench America's thirst, but is private business the answer? The tap water was so dark in Atlanta some days this summer that Meg Evans couldn't see the bottom of the tub when she filled the bath. Elsewhere in her neighborhood, Gregg Goldenberg puts his infant daughter, Kasey, to bed unbathed rather than lower her into a brew "the color of iced tea...
Do it yourself If there's trouble at the tap (By Marianne Lavelle) Consumers are embarking on their own efforts to ensure safe drinking water at home. But choices about testing water, filtering it, or switching to bottled are far from clear....... Most bottled water is clean. But in 1999, a Natural Resources Defense Council study showed that four of 103 tested brands of bottled water violated federal standards for chemicals or coliform bacteria, while one quarter fell short of stricter California standards for other contaminants......
National Public Radio reports on drinking water issues:
Weak Drinking Water Laws Blamed in D.C. Lead Scarere - April 19, 2004 News of dangerous levels of lead in Washington D.C.'s drinking water sparks an outcry from the community -- especially because city water officials knew about the problem and did little to warn the public. In the first of two reports, NPR's Daniel Zwerdling explains that weak federal laws regulating drinking water are to blame.
Aging Water Systems Plague Cities - April 20, 2004 Lead in drinking water in Washington, D.C., is just part of a larger, more profound problem that affects cities across the country. In his second report about contaminated drinking water, NPR's Daniel Zwerdling reveals that many cities are still getting their drinking water from systems that date back to the 19th and early 20th centuries.
Five Myths About Drinking Water (4/3/2008) 1: Drink Eight Glasses Each Day; 2: Drinking Lots of Water Helps Clear Out Toxins; 3: Lots of Water Equals Healthier Skin; 4: Drinking Extra Water Leads to Weight Loss; 5: It's Easy to Get Dehydrated During a Workout.
For Empty Water Bottles, There's an Afterlife (7/11/2007) Last year, Americans bought more than 4 billion gallons of water in individual-portion bottles. Most of the containers end up in the trash. But now, there's a competitive global market for the bottles, once they're recycled.
Water Wars Out West: Keep What You Catch! (7/1/2009) Colorado takes this sort of illegal harvesting of precipitation seriously. If caught, Hanzel could have faced fines of up to $500 a day. Luckily for him, a law recently passed legalizes his collection system. It's a narrow exception to the ban for people who would have to dig a well or have water trucked in.
Reader's Digest Magazine
Drinking Recycled Sewage Water: The Debate
Drinking treated sewage is a proposition as emotionally wrought as it is scientifically feasible. Thatís why the editors at Readerís Digest thought it was time to gather together the facts and arguments on both sides of the issue. Here they are, then, and we leave it to you to make up your own mind (3/2012).
|New York Times,
Toxic Waters: (12/16/2009)
A series about the worsening pollution in American waters and regulator's response.
If you have any questions, comments,
suggestions for additional sites
that might be of interest, or relevant news stories,
please contact me,
The e-mail address above is an image without a
reduce automatic harvesting of my e-mail address for use in spam.
has been featured in:
Water Conditioning and Purification Magazine, Website of the Month, July 2003
On Tap (Drinking Water News For America's Small Communities) Web Resources, Summer 2002
On Tap Magazine is an excellent source of information and can be ordered for FREE on-line!
The Houston Chronicle, Hotlist: Drinking water, 9/11/01, By Cay Dickson
|Please be advised that the information on this page and on this site is for general educational information only and is NOT intended to make any specific health claims or recommend any specific treatment method or preventative advice for any health issue or problem. Consult your physician or a health specialist for specific steps to take for your specific health requirements!|
Copyright © 2001 Randy Johnson. All rights reserved.
Updated February 2012
|Concerns about water safety|
|Children and contaminated water|
|Pregnancy and drinking water contaminants|
dissolved in water
suspended in water
|Drinking water sources|
|Location of home|
|Chlorination and DBPs|
|High risk populations: pregnancy|
|Home age & lead|
|Use Sensory clues to identify contaminants|
|Importance of product certification|
|Things to consider|
Point of Entry (POE)
Point Of Use (POU)
- Reverse Osmosis (RO)
* Activated carbon
* Solid block
* Pore size
- Bottled water
- Ultraviolet (UV)
- Water softeners
- Ion exchange
- Whole House
- 'Altered' water
|Comparison of drinking water treatment methods - chart|
|Comparison of long-term costs for water treatment|
|Emergency water treatment|
Other water topics
|Masaru Emoto & Water Crystals|
|Distilled Water & Health|
|Four Steps to determine the best water treatment method for you|
|links to drinking water related sites|
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