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Originally posted by LazarusTheLong
that makes for very bad water, and in our state, they issue a warning to boil water during those times, rather than flush the neccessary amounts of Clorine, and Flouride thru the pipes (since it would be above safe levels of PPM)
Originally posted by mamoocando
I know where im living now, the water is full of chlorine.
also, i think its a big psychological thing for people to drink bottled water, they think its better than the normal crap that comes out of the sink. and it just might be.
The IBWA urges consumers to trust bottled water in part because the FDA
requires water sources to be "inspected, sampled, analyzed and approved."
However, the NRDC argues that the FDA provides no specific requirements-such
as proximity to industrial facilities, underground storage tanks or
dumps-for bottled water sources. That's looser monitoring than occurs at the
EPA, which requires more specific assessments of tap water sources. Olson
says one brand of "spring water," which had a graphic of mountains and a
lake on the label, was actually taken from a well in Massachusetts in the
parking lot of an industrial facility. The well, which is no longer used for
bottled water, was near hazardous waste and had experienced contamination by
According to Olson, the FDA has no official procedure for rejecting bottled
water sources once they become contaminated. He also says a 1990 government
audit revealed that 25 percent of water bottlers had no record of source
approval. Further, in contrast to the EPA, which employs hundreds of
staffers to protect the nation's tap water systems, the FDA doesn't have
even one full-time regulator in charge of bottled water.
Scott Hoober of the Kansas Rural Water Association says that although
municipal system managers have to pay a certified lab to test samples
weekly, monthly and quarterly for a long list of contaminants, water
bottlers can use any lab they choose to perform tests as infrequently as
once a year. Unlike utilities, which must publish their lab results in a
public record, bottlers don't have to notify anyone of their findings,
including consumers who inquire.
Further, while EPA rules specify that no confirmed E. coli or
fecal coliform (bacteria that indicate possible contamination by fecal
matter) contamination is allowed in tap water, the FDA merely set a minimum
level for E. coli and fecal coliform presence in bottled water.
Henry Kim, consumer safety officer for the FDA, asserts, "We want bottled water to have a comparable quality to that of tap water"-which, of course, runs counter to the widely held public belief that bottled water is better. The situation is similar in the European Union and in Canada, where there are more regulations on tap than bottled water.
Environmentalists also point out that if a brand of bottled water is wholly
packaged and sold within the same state, it is technically not regulated by
the FDA, and is therefore only legally subject to state standards, which
tend to vary widely in scope and vigor. Co-op America reports that 43 states
have one or fewer staff members dedicated to bottled water regulation.
Are rules for bottled water stricter than those for tap water?
Not exactly. No one should assume that just because he or she purchases water in a bottle that it is necessarily any better regulated, purer, or safer than most tap water. NRDC has completed a four-year study of the bottled water industry, including its bacterial and chemical contamination problems. We have conducted a review of available information on bottled water and its sources, an in-depth assessment of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and all 50 states' programs governing bottled water safety, and an analysis of government and academic bottled water testing results. We have compared FDA's bottled water rules with certain international bottled water standards and with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rules that apply to piped tap water supplied by public water systems.
Major Regulatory Gaps
*FDA's rules completely exempt 60-70 percent of the bottled water sold in the United States from the agency's bottled water standards, because FDA says its rules do not apply to water packaged and sold within the same state. Nearly 40 states say they do regulate such waters (generally with few or no resources dedicated to policing this); therefore, about one out of five states do not.
*FDA also exempts "carbonated water," "seltzer," and many other waters sold in bottles from its bottled water standards, applying only vague general sanitation rules that set no specific contamination limits. Fewer than half of the states require these waters to meet bottled water standards.
*Even when bottled waters are covered by FDA's specific bottled water standards, those rules are weaker in many ways than EPA rules that apply to big city tap water. For instance, comparing those EPA regulations (for water systems which serve the majority of the U.S. population) with FDA's bottled water rules:
*City tap water can have no confirmed E. coli or fecal coliform bacteria (bacteria that are indications of possible contamination by fecal matter). FDA bottled water rules include no such prohibition (a certain amount of any type of coliform bacteria is allowed in bottled water).
*City tap water from surface water must be filtered and disinfected (or the water system must adopt well-defined protective measures for the source water it uses, such as control of potentially polluting activities that may affect the stream involved). In contrast, there are no federal filtration or disinfection requirements for bottled water -- the only source-water protection, filtration, or disinfection provisions for bottled water are completely delegated to state discretion, and many states have adopted no such meaningful programs.
*Bottled water plants must test for coliform bacteria just once a week; big-city tap water must be tested 100 or more times a month.
*Repeated high levels of bacteria (i.e., "heterotrophic-plate-count" bacteria) in tap water combined with a lack of disinefectant can trigger a violation for cities -- but not for water bottlers.
*Most cities using surface water have had to test for Cryptosporidium or Giardia, two common water pathogens that can cause diarrhea and other intestinal problems (or more serious problems in vulnerable people), yet bottled water companies don't have to do this.
*City tap water must meet standards for certain important toxic or cancer-causing chemicals such as phthalate (a chemical that can leach from plastic, including plastic bottles); some in the industry persuaded FDA to exempt bottled water from regulations regarding these chemicals.
*Any violation of tap-water standards is grounds for enforcement -- but bottled water in violation of standards can still be sold if it is labeled as "containing excessive chemicals" or "excessive bacteria" (unless FDA finds it "adulterated," a term not specifically defined).
*Cities generally must test at least once a quarter for many chemical contaminants. Water bottlers generally must test only annually.
*Cities must have their water tested by government-certified labs; such certified testing is not required for bottlers.
*Tap water test results and notices of violations must be reported to state or federal officials. There is no mandatory reporting for water bottlers.
*City water system operators must be certified and trained to ensure that they know how to safely treat and deliver water -- not so for bottlers.
*City water systems must issue annual "right-to-know" reports telling consumers what is in their water; as detailed in this report, bottlers successfully killed such a requirement for bottled water.
FDA and state bottled water programs are seriously underfunded. FDA says bottled water is a low priority; the agency estimates it has the equivalent of fewer than one staff person dedicated to developing and issuing bottled water rules, and the equivalent of fewer than one FDA staffer assuring compliance with the bottled water rules on the books. Although a small number of states (such as California) have real bottled water programs, our 1998 survey found that 43 states have fewer than one staff person dedicated to bottled water regulation. By comparison, hundreds of federal staff and many more state personnel are dedicated to tap water regulation. Directing disproportionate resources to tap water protection is warranted. At the same time, over half the U.S. public (including many immunocompromised people) uses bottled water, and many millions of people use bottled water as their chief or exclusive drinking water source.
Skeletal fluorosis phases
Osteosclerotic phase Ash concentration (mgF/kg) Symptoms and signs
Normal Bone 500 to 1,000 Normal
Preclinical Phase 3,500 to 5,500 Asymptomatic; slight radiographically-detectable increases in bone mass
Clinical Phase I 6,000 to 7,000 Sporadic pain; stiffness of joints; osteosclerosis of pelvis and vertebral spine
Clinical Phase II 7,500 to 9,000 Chronic joint pain; arthritic symptoms; slight calcification of ligaments' increased osteosclerosis and cancellous bones; with/without osteoporosis of long bones
Phase III: Crippling Fluorosis 8,400 Limitation of joint movement; calcification of ligaments of neck vertebral column; crippling deformities of the spine and major joints; muscle wasting; neurological defects/compression of spinal cord
Originally posted by ViolatoR
FDA announced last week it will allow fluoridation of bottled water to assist in the prevention of dental caries (cavities), prompting praise from the American Dental Association and concerns from anti-fluoride groups.