From Dr. Mercola:
By Dr. Mercola
Drinking pure water every day is a key component of optimal health, yet more than one billion people on Earth do not have access to safe, clean drinking water.
Not only is much of the water for the one billion contaminated with infectious organisms, but more than likely the vast majority of the planet has toxins in their municipal drinking water.
Two of the primary water polluters are large-scale monocrop farms and confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs). According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA),1 US states with high concentrations of CAFOs report 20 to 30 serious water quality problems each year.
Lawsuits Against CAFOs Highlight Growing Pollution Problem
In Iowa, factory farms are accused of polluting two rivers that supply drinking water to the city of Des Moines.2 High levels of nitrates have been detected in the water, which is both difficult and costly to remove.
The health hazards of nitrates include blue baby syndrome, cancer, autoimmune diseases, reproductive problems, and more.
In Lower Yakima Valley, the Community Association for Restoration of the Environment (CARE) and Center for Food Safety (CFS) recently won a summary judgment3 against four CAFO dairies accused of unlawful water pollution4 after a 2012 report5 showed 20 percent of the wells tested in the area had nitrate levels above federal drinking water standards.
Unfortunately, the toxic waste created by factory farms cannot be completely contained or eliminated, no matter what you do. It has to go somewhere, even if it doesn’t go directly into a valuable water source.
The long-term solution is to change our commercial farming practices to root out toxic chemicals and soil additives, and to grow crops in such a way that the farm is contributing to the overall health and balance of the environment rather than polluting it and creating a dysfunctional ecosystem.
Water Pollution Has Many Sources
In addition to agriculture, other factors contributing to our diminishing water quality include but are not limited to:
Dentist offices installing mercury “silver” fillings without using amalgam separators. This is the largest source of mercury in wastewater entering publicly-owned treatment works. Fluorosilicic acid (a toxic waste product from the phosphate fertilizer industry) added to water supplies, ostensibly to protect against tooth decay, tends to be contaminated with arsenic.6
According to research7 published in 2013, diluted fluorosilicic acid add on average 0.08 ppb of arsenic to your drinking water, and the Natural Resources Defense Council8 estimates that 56 million Americans living in 25 states drink water with arsenic at unsafe levels.
The chemicals used in water treatment, such as chlorine and chloramine, create highly toxic disinfection byproducts (DBPs).
Three principal types of DBPs are: trihalomethanes (THMs), volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and haloacetic acids (HAAs). THMs are particularly hazardous when inhaled, which could expose you to toxic vapors when showering in hot water.