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Where Do You Stand


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June 30, 2004
 

Solidarity
 
I have always felt a little defiled when I have had water bought for me, or if I have even had a drink of someone else's paid water. I will admit that on the rare occasion I have bought water because at the time I did not have a receptacle to hold water, usually on trips stuck in vehicles for hours on end with nothing practacle and with conservation in mind that would effectively hold water. It just doesn't make sense; waste the plastic and the money and buy bottled water when there is a viable and free source of water fresh and airated out of the tap.

— Byron, Calgary
 

 
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June 27, 2004
 

Water as a necessity and this is not a TEST.
 
I live in Jacksonville, Florida. The water in Jacksonville is some of the most disgusting foulness I have ever tasted. Prior to living in Florida I lived in Upstate New York. The water was very good there. In Jacksonville bottled water is a part of life. It is not an option, the water here smells like a dirty fish tank. I am glad spring water exist and it is bottled. Let bottled water reign...because a water treatment plant ain't helpin Jacksonville.

— Mo, Jacksonville, FL
 

 
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June 22, 2004
 

How much water is in your room right this instant?
 
Do you have a glass of water by your side? Add 0.25 litres, is it a cup of coffee? Add 120 litres (coffee beans need water to grow from the seed to the bean... over many months... the amount of water it takes for those few beans in your cup is roughly 120 litres). Do you have a sandwich? Is there beef in it? That's a LOT of water - grain has to be water to grow to feed the cow that eats ten times it's body weight to produce the beef that you're eating. Are the lights on? It could be hydro-electricity, not consumptive, but to make the power, you need to store the water and if you're storing the water, mr.CoffeeBeanMan can't irrigate his fields. Wooden desk? Plastic computer - lots of water used within industries... And of course, water within you... etc. etc. Water is truly the key to development and the key to life. I only wish our politicians and public would treat it that way.

— Kyle
 

 
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June 16, 2004
 

Water Matters
 
Many people contaminate water. With the lack of thought that water is what we use daily to survive! We need about 90% water in our bodies to continue in life! Destroying water will only destroy us! I mean, who can survive off of chemical filled acid drinks!

— Charmaine, New York, NY
 

 
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June 11, 2004
 

I Use an E-Spring Filter!
 
Here in NM where I live the water is at "acceptable" levels for contaminates. Nevertheless I use a home filter that is at the sink, undermounted with one of those arc type faucets next to the regular faucet. I reuse water bottles for a period of time then recycle. I don't but bottled water, I agree it's questionable in both quality and price. Why would I need to when I can use my espring filter? If anyone wants to check more info e-mail me at cynthiaseggs@yahoo.com My dentist's assistant watered a potted plant with water that had set for a while and for the first time in 9 years it bloomed! She kept this up because it was obvious plants don't like chlorine either. The skin, the bowels, and the bladder are filtering and sweating out toxins from out bodies every day. It is important to me to have purer water eat well and to cleanse my system. It really becomes a habit like anything else, therefore much easier as time goes by and the learning curve takes effect.

— Cynthia, Albuquerque, NM
 

 
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June 9, 2004
 

99% of faucets leach lead from brass fittings
 
I read somewhere that 99% of the faucets in California are made of brass fittings which can leach lead. So I had the water test in one of my sinks where the water had not been turned on for a week or more. It tested (too) high for lead. That's why I drink only bottled, filtered and even distilled water. You wouldn't believe the junk left over at the bottom of the distiller...smells bad too. Also, nephew won an award with a science project that demonstrated that plants will have stunted growth with tap water when compared to plants watered with filtered water.

— John, CA
 

 
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June 8, 2004
 

Nalgene
 
I use washable, non-absorbing nalgene bottles. I drink 6-8 litres a day, wash the bottles twice a week, and fill up from my filtered water in the fridge. A great, waste saving idea!!!

— Puanani, San Francisco, CA
 

 
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June 7, 2004
 

Tip Top Tap
 
I've lived in several different parts of the country in the last 15 years, but generally find the tap water to be acceptable. Yes, sometimes there is a lot of chlorine taste, but have been able to cheaply filter it out. In my opinion, the whole bottled water phenomena is corporate marketing run amok. There is a perception that the bottled water is safer, but that's not necessarily so (playing on consumer fears?). People 50 years ago would have laughed themselves silly if you told them we'd be buying water at the prices we do for a product that's marginally better, if at all. Unless you live someplace where there is a credible contamination problem, save yourself some money—go tap the tap. Oh yeah, recall that there was a big push years ago to flourinate the water to prevent dental decay—I hope people realize that their children's teeth are now at risk, too.

— Gary, Boston, MA
 

 
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May 25, 2004
 

Too many chemicals
 
I live in a small village in Michigan where the water comes form underground as usual. The only problem is that under our ground is a limestone sheet. This lime leaches in to our drinking water and to combat the smell and taste, chlorine and fluoride are added. Our water leaves stains on tubs and sinks. It creates a white film on top when boiled. I will not allow my family or dogs to drink it! Sorry, but we pay for bottled water regularly.

— Deidra, MI
 

 
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May 21, 2004
 

3 problems
 
1 - water resources in the world are disappearing rapidly....so much so that corps. are trying to buy water rights in countries where they don't know any better than to sell them.....my feeling is that using bottles tends to waste less water than running the faucet all the time, usually for more water than one actually needs.

2 - SF water just switched to chloramine - more ammonia, which causes more lead to leach from lead pipes.

3 - fluoride is a Class A poison....and I don't think it should be in the water AND let dentists put it on kids' teeth AND occur naturally.

— Anonymous
 

 
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May 20, 2004
 

Tap-water caused miscarriages
 
In my town the pregnant women drink only bottled water because of past problems with CBP and THM levels in the drinking water causing miscarriages. The city has since dealt with the problem, but no one wants to risk the health of their unborn child. We always keep bottled water on hand for our pregnant friends.

— Christi, VA
 

 
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May 10, 2004
 

Hesitant about pharmaceuticals
 
Ever since a news story came out several years ago here in Atlanta about drugs in the water supply I have been hesitant to use water straight from the tap without boiling it for food or drinks. The story claimed that most water treatment plants filter out certain harmful chemicals but have little effect on removing common drugs like aspirin. They go through the body, into the plumbing, and come out of your faucet. I'm not a fan of otc drugs to begin with, and I certainly don't want them in my water. (If they don't think to filter these, what else might they be forgetting?)

— Sarah, Atlanta, GA
 

 
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May 8, 2004
 

Can't drink the city's water
 
I have learned the hard way that I can't drink the tap water. It has giardia in it and I'm more likely than most to keep those little parasistes in my intestines, most people just pass them on through. BUT most bottled water is tap water. READ THE LABEL, is it purified somehow, reverse osmosis, etc. If it's not why not just drink the tap water. Who know what's been in the spring!!!!

— Anonymous
 

 
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May 7, 2004
 

Water-Lake Michigan
 
I turned 14 ... for a family reunion..there in milwalkee... went to the water front... almost cried at the site... I cut cut my toe on a beer tab when i was younger... But, the water was cold & blue... beautiful to all to see... Now it looks dark & still...what & why this could happen to such a wonderful lake??? that was 40 some years ago...I worry to look at it again.. . please help are water ways... Wild Bill..

— Wild Bill, Orlando, FL
 

 
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May 7, 2004
 

Teaching recycling
 
When recycling becomes a part of everyone's day-to-day, second nature, then we will have a successful outcome. I think it should be a part of every school's curriculum, built into the school day, starting in Kindergarten. The kids will take it home and their good habits will be an example for the parents.

— Anonymous
 

 
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April 23, 2004
 

Recycle dehumidifier water
 
No, I don't drink the water from my dehumidifier. I do use the water from the dehumidifier in the basement to water my plants on the porch, however. Last summer I realized that I was putting about a gallon of tap water a day in my hanging plants and it just seemed like a waste. Then I realized that I was dumping about 3 gallons of water every few days from the dehumidifier in the basement. Now I just take the dehumidifier water and dump it into the watering can instead of the sink. It works great.

— Tara, MA
 

 
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April 22, 2004
 

Plastic Bottle Use and Reuse
 
I used to reuse plastic bottles, but stopped when I read a recent article about how the thinner plastic degrades with reuse and it's best not to use such bottles more than once. (I guess those inorganic plasticky molecules can get in your system — same kind of thing with why it's not a good idea to microwave w/plastic or styrofoam.) So, now I carry a heavy-grade plastic thermos around with me and drink out of a mug. If I'm looking for something more compact, I'll use a smaller thermos of stainless steel or heavy-grade plastic. My water — pretty much the only thing I drink — comes from reverse-osmosis-filtered well water. I choose not to drink bottled water on a regular basis (even recycling the empty bottles can cost a great deal of energy and result in secondary products with a less stable molecular structure (posing more potential health problems)). In general, I try to refuse the disposable route before I reuse or recycle. So, my husband and I consider water quality and potential contaminants whenever we move so that we can drink from the tap.

— Shana

Note: In Border Talk, Umbra Fisk addresses the pressing issue of whether disposable plastic water bottles leach chemicals over time. Read her answer. »

— POV's Borders Staff
 

 
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April 22, 2004
 

Is chlorine good for you?
 
My problem with tap water is the chlorine. When I take a bath, I come out smelling like a swimming pool, and I cannot believe that ingesting chlorine every day can be good for the body. In fact, I believe it's probably harmful. I bought a dechlorinating filter for my shower head and love it. I fill up my tea pot and pots for boiling pasta and vegetables from my shower head. Believe it or not, the noodles taste cleaner. For my drinking water, I refill jugs at Whole Foods with distilled water at 35 cents/gallon. I also reuse bottles as much as I can to reduce waste. If someone can prove to me that chlorine is safe to ingest, I'll drink tap water exclusively again.

— Karen, New Orleans, LA
 

 
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April 22, 2004
 

Reusing water bottles
 
Hey, I could have been featured... I do/feel the same as the man featured in your story about water bottle reusal. I get an Evian bottle, the real big one, and continue to fill and refill it. It goes w/me everywhere. People stare but I don't care. Water costs too much and it's really a ridiculous amount of waste - why buy new everytime?

— Amanda, Madison, WI
 

 
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April 10, 2004
 

Reusing Plastic Water Bottles
 
Thank you for the story. I wash the plastic water bottles my kids bring home from my ex-husband's in the dishwasher and refill them from the tap. Let them sit on the counter for 10 minutes to get rid of the chlorine taste, recap and refridgerate. I drink from 12-14 a day. I refuse to pay for water since my home water bill is high in this part of MI (50 a month) and some of that bottled stuff I think is a rip off too. Thanks for showing that some of us care about reusing! A plastic cup or bottle, when washed, what is the difference?

— Lynette, Saginaw, MI
 

 
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March 29, 2004
 

I'm obsessed with recycling but not reusing
 
Reusing a water bottle more than once is gross unless you boil it clean as bacteria and very small food materials can collect around the opening. I read a stat in Harper's recently that cites 12% of all food poisoning in the UK is attributed to bottled water. Perhaps this is from reuse of the bottle. As for recycling, I have this philosophy to recycle everything I use that is in fact recyclable, all papers, plastics and glass items. I am pretty rigid about this and on vacation I often have a bag of recyclables that I bring home with me to put in our recycle bin. In Italy, I lucked out because even in the Tuscan countryside there are big recycle receptacles along the roadsides in small towns. Other trips like puenta mita mexico I came back with a bag of at least 50 water bottles. What would Jon do if he traveled to Mexico or South America where you can't drink the tap water? How rigid is he?

— Liz, San Francisco, CA
 

 
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March 19, 2004
 

Need to use filtered or bottle water
 
I live in a small town and the lake we have to get our drinking water is very low due to not getting enough rain. The filters we use at the sink do not last as long as they should due to the sludge in the water. Sometimes the water is even brown. When it is brown, you can't even wash clothes. A lot of bottle water is sold in this town. I keep several gallons of bottle water all the time and switch over to that when we need to. Until moving here, I always took water for granted. Not anymore. We don't even water the yard here because we would rather have drinking water that pretty yards.

— Robert, Holdenville, OK
 

 
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March 19, 2004
 

Another disconnect from the natural world
 
The rise of bottled water is just the latest in our culture's disconnection from the natural world that sustains us all. "Giving up" on the nation's public drinking water supply is one more way of losing touch with the world around us that is our natural home. Tap water is wonderful... if it isn't where you live, come on up here to the Great Lakes basin and enjoy some of the best drinking water around. Give up on your local drinking water, and you are reacting to a symptom rather than the underlying problems that threaten our water supply... be it farm runoff, urban runoff, groundwater contamination. A spoiled water supply that we do not trust... is this the legacy we want to leave our children? The choices are ours to make. Drink tap water, and demand that it remain pure.

— Dan, Rochester Hills, MI
 

 
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March 18, 2004
 

If you don't filter your water, then your body will.
 
I have been using ESpring water purifier for about 2 years now and I find the water quality the best among all the filters/purifiers/bottled out there. The water is light and taste free, I usually take a bottle of epsring water if I go out. The purifier is expensive but a lifetime investment in my opinion. My mother had digestive problems due to water here in the US. We tried all sorts of filters and bottled water, none helped. But ESpring solved the problem. I don't work for them by the way, just a very satisfied customer.

— Prakash, Dallas, TX
 

 
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March 18, 2004
 

Degenerating Water Quality
 
Here in the Midwest, contamination from fertilizer runoff, even in deep wells, has become a hot issue. Without a nitrite-free water source, birth defects and learning disabilities in young children will rise. On the other hand, without chemical fertilizers, the farmers will not grow as much food, since the land is nutrient depleted. Many local restaurants no longer offer water with meals except by request.

— Russell, Rockford, IL
 

 
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March 17, 2004
 

Well I Never
 
I live in Orlando Florida. I don't drink water from the tap because it tastes like sludge. If I am outside I drink Aquafina, when I'm at home I have a Pur water filter. I just don't like the flavor of drinking from the toilet.

— Maggie
 

 
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March 8, 2004
 

What's So Odd About Recycling Water Bottles?
 
My wife uses the same three all the time. Filling them about 1/2 way and then putting them in the freezer. When she leaves the house she takes one of the bottles and adds water. She always has ice cold water with her. My two grown children do the same thing.

I use the same water bottle at work, filling it up each day with water from the cooler. We also use the bottles for milk when camping, orange juice, tea (again, fill the bottles about 1/2 way and freeze them, then add more tea when ready to go). Try putting sugar in them when camping, they are air tight.

Lots of use for the water bottles.

— Jim
 

 
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March 6, 2004
 

Privatization
 
I worry less about people who choose to buy boutique water than about people in other countries where public water providers are increasingly being privatized. You don't have to be a conspiracy theorist to worry about the effect that for-profit water supplies will have. The CBC produced a really useful series about this not too long ago.

— Daniel, New York, NY
 

 
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March 4, 2004
 

Refilling Dangerous?
 
I recently read somewhere that most plastic water bottles are meant to be used one time only. After that, they start to leach dangerous chemicals - they leach more with each refilling. Any truth to this? How would I find out? Thank you

— Karen
 

 
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March 1, 2004
 

An Answer Once and For All
 
In Border Talk Umbra addresses the pressing question, do disposable plastic water bottles leach chemicals over time? Is this an urban myth or a legitimate concern? »

— POV's Borders Staff
 

 
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February 29, 2004
 

Fluoride - yuck
 
Maybe the water is okay in most places but in my town there is so much fluoride in the water that it leaves blue spots on dishes and my car when I wash it and it tastes like a cocktail of chemicals. It is totally wretched since they have added fluoride to our water supply.

— Bill
 

 
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