Water on the Blue Planet

It’s another beautiful snowy day in the Mid-Atlantic and I have just cleared my sidewalks and driveway of eight inches of heavy snow and sleet, placing it on the adjacent lawn and flower beds.  Unlike rain, which tends to run off rather quickly, these ice crystals will melt slowly and soak into the soil and


Chromium-6 in Drinking Water

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) recently raised alarm over the presence of chromium-6 in single samples of drinking water from 31 of 35 U.S. cities tested.  The group’s report notes the average level of chromium-6 in the 35 samples (0.18 parts per billion, or “ppb”) is higher than the 2009 draft California health goal of


EPA Seeking Input from the Public on Drinking Water Strategy

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has launched an online discussion forum to gather public input on how the agency can improve drinking water protection. The information will be used in implementing EPA’s new drinking water strategy, announced by Administrator Lisa P. Jackson in March of this year. EPA officials are seeking input from water


Waterborne Diseases Cost US $500 Million a Year

According to new research from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), hospitalizations from three common and preventable waterborne diseases – Legionnaire’s disease, cryptosporidiosis and giardiasis – could cost the U.S an estimated $539 million dollars each year. These figures represent only a fraction of all waterborne disease costs. They underscore the large and hidden


Chlorine in Tap Water Is Safe to Drink

There has been a lot of press recently touting new water filters for faucets, showers, and entire home systems. As a marketing tactic to increase sales of these products, advertisers have been overplaying an unsubstantiated risk associated with drinking water chlorination. They overlook the benefits of chlorine as an inexpensive and highly effective disinfectant and


Soldier Assisting in Relief Effort Gets Rare Bacterial Disease

Since the earthquake of January 12, 2010 that devastated Haiti and resulted in more than 230,000 deaths, thousands of volunteers and military personnel have traveled to the distressed country to assist in the relief effort. The desperate and unhealthy living conditions make the relief effort that much more challenging for the volunteers and military in Haiti.


Storing water is a good idea in case of emergency

As the winter progresses one is reminded to always be prepared in case of emergency. Snowstorms, power outages, broken water pipes, and spring floods can all present challenges to basic living conditions. It is important to always be prepared for emergencies that may create a need for you and your family to remain in your home for


Storm water runoff into dry wells risks contaminating public water system

The U. S. Geological Survey’s (USGS’s) National Water Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program is investigating nine U.S. aquifer systems to examine the pathways and processes by which contaminants reach public water supply wells through underground storm water disposal. Scientists are studying the processes below the land surface that control whether contaminants introduced in storm water are delayed, transformed or mobilized.


Volunteers Help Produce Safe Drinking Water for Haitians

Since the earthquake of January 12, 2010 that devastated Haiti and resulted in more than 230,000 deaths, thousands of volunteers have traveled to that country to assist in the relief effort. Virtually all reports, whether they originate from the media, the Haitian government, organizations and agencies such as the Red Cross, WHO/PAHO, UNICEF, CDC, and OXFAM point


Disinfecting Private Wells

About 12 million American households, roughly 15 percent of the U.S. population, draw their drinking water from private wells. Unlike public water systems, which are regulated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), private wells are the responsibilities of homeowners. EPA standards do not apply to private wells. Consequently, well-owning homeowners are obliged to protect