A recent Associated Press-GfK poll looked at American’s opinions on tap water safety, post-Flint.

They found that only around half of Americans are very confident that their tap water is safe. And far from thinking of Flint, Michigan’s lead contamination of tap water as an “isolated problem,” a majority of respondents said they believed the crisis indicates a widespread problem with America’s water system.

Water confidence differed along economic and racial lines, with whites (54 percent) and people living in households making more than $100,000 a year (60 percent) much more likely to say they were extremely or very confident their tap water was safe. Blacks (40 percent) and Hispanics (28 percent), as well as those making less than $50,000 a year (less than 40 percent) were far less likely to say the same.

According to the poll, only a third of Americans are drinking their water straight from the tap. One third are drinking filtered tap water. The rest are drinking bottled water.

But what are these filters filtering out? And is bottled water really safer?

Lead water filters do exist, and have been put in place in Flint. However, some households had lead levels so high that, initially, the filters weren’t effective. Better results started to appear the next week.

Is bottled water safer than tap water?

According to a National Geographic article, the answer is usually no. As the authors point out, bottled water, from production to transportation to the bottles themselves, results in a large increase in waste. And many companies get their water from the same place two-thirds of American households reportedly do: the tap.

“Bottled water companies gain high profits by drawing water from public water sources, putting it in plastic containers, and reselling it at 2,900 times the price of regular tap.”

Where do you get your drinking water?

 

 

@CSGoodWV