A recent article on Yahoo!’s Green page caught my attention when it claimed that another study found that bottled water also contains contaminants. Bottled water has been a hot topic of conversation lately – whether it be about recycling the bottles or the actual product behind the plastic. Although I’m pretty sick of this topic and have resorted to filtering water myself (via Brita/Pur products) I continually find myself interested in any new “findings” in the bottled water world. Perhaps it is the little analytical chemist inside me waiting for an opportunity jump on this never ending bandwagon.
The research included 10 different brands that were tested for purity and two came up with unsatisfactory contamination levels (which were never defined)- Wal*Mart’s brand and Giant Food’s brand.
The study’s lab tests on 10 brands of bottled water detected 38 chemicals including bacteria, caffeine, the pain reliever acetaminophen, fertilizer, solvents, plastic-making chemicals and the radioactive element strontium. Though some probably came from tap water that some companies use for their bottled water, other contaminants probably leached from plastic bottles, the researchers said.
This statement includes the results of all 10 brands of bottled water, however the rest of the article only focuses on the findings in Wal*Mart and Giant Food claiming that the levels in the other brands were not high enough to warrant further testing- and the article all together fails to mention what the other 8 brands studied were! Frankly, if all of these things are showing up in my water – which is supposed to be pure – I think even 1 ppb warrants more tests. And although they say these levels are comparable to the water we’re getting out of our taps, shouldn’t this be saying something about our filtration systems? Perhaps we shouldn’t just be focusing on bottled water. (Germaphobe – I know) I suppose its the little analytical chemist in me again screaming out for numbers and quantities – this article is lacking in pertinent information! In the end, Wal*Mart basically claimed they were shocked because none of their tests revealed this same information. It made me think of Instrumental Lab – do I see a possible scenario in the works?
So what do you guys think… stay away from bottled water or consider the possibility that the quantities of contaminants are too small to kill anyone?