Are You Aware

Marcus johnson tjmj at
Wed Aug 13 01:04:31 EST 1997

An EPA report on the status of the nation's lakes, rivers, and estuaries
says that while water quality is not getting worse in America, neither is
any progress being made. More than one third of all waterways are reported
to be unsuitable for fishing or swimming because of pollution. Most
contaminants are sewage and bacteria, fertilizer, toxic metals, oil and
grease. Typical sources of the pollution include runoff from farms,
industrial waste, and city sewer discharge.

Newsweek: "Several million Americans are drinking water that is potentially
hazardous due to chemical or bacterial contamination." 

L.A. Times: "Communities with drinking water contamination by chemicals are
being hit with strange patterns of illness." 

ABC Network News: "U.S. Industries...generate some 88,000,000 pounds of
toxic wastes a year, 90 percent of which, the E.PA. estimates, are
improperly disposed." 

The New York Times, June 2, 1995: "More than 1 in 5 Americans unknowingly
drink tap water polluted with feces, radiation or other
contaminants...Nearly 1,000 deaths each year and at least 400,000 cases of
waterborne illness may be attributed to contaminated water. . " 

Houston Chronicle, June 2, 1995: "The parasite [cryptosporidium] that
killed more than 100 people in Milwaukee two years ago has been found in
drinking water systems that serve 45 million people..." 

USA TODAY, March 30, 1995: "Parasite in water is widespread...can be
dangerous, even fatal, to people with weakened immune systems." 

U.S. News & World Report, June 26, 1995: "Some individuals, federal
officials said last week, should not drink water straight from the tap
because a disease causing parasite can slip right through many municipal
water treatment systems." 

The Washington Post, June 2, 1995: "Federal statutes do not require
municipal water authorities to clean cryptosporidium from water

With over 70,000 chemicals now in use and with the introduction of a 1,000
more each year, drinking water contamination is increasing at an alarming
rate. According to a leading citizen lobby, U.S. drinking water has 2,100
toxic chemicals causing cancer, cell mutation, and nervous disorders.
Existing treatment plants were not designed to remove the new toxic
chemicals, and the government is slow to regulate the high rate of
contamination. Responsible citizens are left to educate and protect
themselves from the world's greatest environmental threat - chemically
contaminated water. 

Aluminum and Alzheimer's Disease

If you have ever wondered why there is such an astounding increase in
Alzheimer's disease, the answer may have finally been found. In the April
1995 issue of the international science journal, Neurotoxicology, a private
Australian research group reported that the widespread use of aluminum
salts to purify water may lead to brain damage and may account for the
large scale loss of memory experienced by people suffering from Alzheimer's

The Australia Institute of Biomedical Research, based in Sydney, reported
that experiments with rats showed that tiny amounts of aluminum consumed in
water found its way to their brains and accumulated there. It has been
known for twenty years that if aluminum accumulated in the brain over a
period of time, it could kill off neurons and cause memory loss. Institute
researcher Judie Walton noted the worldwide massive increase in Alzheimer's
disease over the past 70 years. She pointed out: "We are drinking it and
eating it throughout our lifetimes, so by the time we are quite old we have
had a lot of exposure to aluminum." Aluminum is also found in food
emulsifiers, anti-perspirant deodorants, baking powder, some toothpastes,
and many of the commonly used cooking utensils. 

The research on rats found measurable amounts of aluminum in their brains
after just one glass of aluminum treated water. Walton observed: "We really
should look seriously at revisiting this possibility that aluminum addition
to foods and drinking water is a health hazard." Due to the concerns about
a link between aluminum and Alzheimer's disease, Sydney, Australia's
largest city, is already gradually withdrawing aluminum treatment of water.

Using aluminum to purify water may be even more dangerous than the use of
fluoride and chlorine in our water. It is believed that the problem is
worsened by the action of fluoride in facilitating the absorption of

The Worsening Contamination of Water

It has been estimated that 53 million Americans, about 20 percent of the
population, have been drinking water that is contaminated with feces,
radiation, lead, or other poisons. This is according to data collected by
the United States Environmental Protection Agency in 1993-1994. This was a
7.6 million increase over 1992!

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) reported that it had tested 29
Midwestern cities and towns and found that all had herbicides present in
the drinking water. In one Illinois city, they found that the level of the
weed killer cyanazine in the public water supply was 34 times above the
federal standards. The EWG estimated that 20 to 25 million Americans are
now drinking water polluted with herbicides. Research in laboratories has
shown a higher incidence of cancer and birth defects in animals fed with
food containing herbicides .

The EWG conservatively attributed at least 1000 deaths each year, and about
400,000 cases of waterborne illness, to contaminated tap water. Besides
hazards for the unsuspecting general population, experts have noted the
serious health consequences that exist for infants and children.

Natural Health and Longevity Resource Center

Health Effects of Lead in Drinking Water

Go To Pure Water Solutions 

More than 120 million people ( about 50% of the population) may get unsafe
water according to a study conducted by the Natural Resources Defense
Council. The General Accounting Office estimates 66% of Safe Drinking Water
Act violations aren't reported. 

The contamination of water is directly related to the degree of
contamination of our environment. Rainwater flushes airborne pollution from
the skies, and then washes over the land before running into the, rivers,
aquifers, and lakes that supply our drinking-water. All of the chemicals
generated by man will eventually end up in our water supplies. Nearly 70%
of Americans are worried about the quality of their drinking water, yet few
realize that water that looks tastes and smells good can be hazardous to
your health. 

Lead is considered the number one health threat to children, and the
effects of lead poisoning can last a lifetime. Not only does lead poisoning
stunt a child's growth, damage the nervous system, and cause learning
disabilities, but it is also now linked to crime and anti-social behavior
in children. 

Lead is a soft material that is resistant to corrosion. Lead has been used
by many civilizations to transport water, and used as early as the times of
Rome. Lead is used primarily for lead pipe line, lead solder and brass
fixtures. Lead is also added to metal alloys such as brass and bronze, as
such, it is used in water faucets and fixtures. Lead has a variety of other
uses. Lead is a toxic substance and has adverse effects on human health.
Even low levels in drinking water, when continuously ingested, will cause a
deterioration in health. Exposure to lead produces many different health
problems. These effects are cumulative and usually are irreversible,
especially in sensitive populations such as fetuses, children, and pregnant
women . 

It has long been known that lead in drinking water is highly toxic, and
recent developments have increased the level of concern. Contamination of
drinking water with significant levels of lead is much more widespread than
previously believed, and levels that were once considered safe are now know
to be health threats. Exposure to lead is cumulative over time. High
concentrations of lead in the body can cause death or permanent damage to
the central nervous system, the brain, and kidneys. This damage commonly
results in behavior and learning problems (such as hyperactivity),memory
and concentration problems, high blood pressure, hearing problems,
headaches, slowed growth, reproductive problems in men and women, digestive
problems, muscle and joint pain. 

Infants, children, pregnant women, and fetuses are more vulnerable to lead
exposure than others because the lead is more easily absorbed into the
sensitive tissue of actively growing bodies. An equal concentration of lead
is more destructive in a child than in an adult. Pregnant women should also
be especially cautious about lead exposure, because it can cause premature
birth, and reduce the birth weight of babies. 

The U.S. Center for Disease Control reports approximately 7,500 cases of
illness linked to drinking water in the United States each year. This
number is much lower than what is generally accepted because drinking water
contaminants are often not considered in the diagnoses of illnesses. Lead
is "a highly toxic metal the agency considers a major public health
threat.", according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The
national Centers for Disease Control considers lead to be the country's
number one preventable pediatric health problem. More than 30 Million
Americans are drinking water with lead levels in excess of the Maximum
Contaminant Level set by the EPA. 

According to the recently released lead toxicological profile for lead from
Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), the adverse
health effects of lead range from slight increases in blood pressure at 10
ug/dL to severe retardation and even death at very high blood-lead levels
of 100 ug/dL. High lead levels in pregnant women increase the risk of
complications in their pregnancies, and damage to the fetuses. High lead in
men can cause heart attack, high blood pressure, strokes, and hypertension.

Over 98% of homes in the U.S. have pipes that contain lead or lead solder.
The main sources are lead pipes, or copper pipes connected by lead solder,
and from brass faucets, which also contain lead ( most chrome plated
faucets are made of brass which is 8% lead). The level of lead in tap water
should not exceed 5 parts per billion. 

Here is what the experts say: 

According to the USA TODAY, May 12, 1993, "Drinking water supplied to 30
million people in 819 cities contains unhealthy levels of lead", an
unprecedented new EPA study says. Children are especially susceptible to
lead poisoning, which can impair mental and physical development.". 

Children's lead exposure is linked to crime, according to the Wisconsin
State Journal, February 7, 1996. " Researchers using a new test that looks
for lead in the bones instead of the blood say exposure to the toxic metal
may contribute to crime and anti-social behavior in children.". 

According to the Wall Street Journal, June 6, 1995, "Your water isn't as
pure as you may have thought". "If you learn your tap water carries a
particular contaminant, consider buying a home filter certified by the
National Sanitation Foundation.". 

"It is highly recommended that before purchasing a filter you verify the
claims made by the vendor. The National Sanitation Foundation, an
independent testing agency, evaluates and certifies the performance of
filtering devices to remove lead from drinking water." EPA Publication 

Water Filters With Superior Performance And Certified by NSF International 


We are committed to impacting our planet in a positive way.
For information regarding alternatives to tap water please see

Marcus Johnson
Theresa James-Johnson
Independent Equinox Representatives


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