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Bottled Water Shockers

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November 22  |  Case Studies, food safety, News, Research, safe drinking water  |   Webmaster

Bottled Water: 10 Shockers “They” Don’t Want You to Know

American bottled watertap water? It’s considered some of the safest in the world. Yet countless Americans shun the stuff that flows from faucets and fountains and buy bottled water instead.
What’s really in the stuff and why does it cost 3,000 times more than tap?

Here Dr. Peter Gleick, the author of “Bottled and Sold: The Story Behind Our Obsession with Bottled Water,” shares 10 of the most shocking facts about bottled water.
 

1. The Most Expensive Tap Water on Earth?
Bottled water comes only from pristine streams, right? Not necessarily.

In fact, nearly half of all bottled water is reprocessed tap water, sold at prices up to 3,000 times higher than consumers pay for tap water. And even before the additional processing, the water meets federal water-quality standards.
 

2. Crickets in Water and Nobody Told You?
Like any other products, water gets recalled, but more often than not you don’t hear much about it.

There have been more than 100 recalls of contaminated bottled water, often months after the products were delivered to store shelves, says Dr. Gleick, who worries that the public rarely gets the memo.

What sorts of contaminants have been found in bottled water?

Benzene, mold, sodium hydroxide, kerosene, styrene, algae, yeast, tetrahydrofuran, sand, fecal coliform and other bacteria, elevated chlorine, glass particles, sanitizer, and crickets, says Gleick.

Yes, crickets.
 

3. What Does the Government Really Test?
Think purity standards for bottled water are more stringent than those for tap water? Not so, says Dr. Gleick. Unlike tap water, which is regulated by the EPA, bottled water is regulated by the FDA – and, in addition to allowing for less frequent quality testing, the FDA doesn’t monitor some contaminants that may be in bottled water. What’s more, the FDA doesn’t insist that bottlers provide water quality reports to consumers.

“Our standards for protecting both tap water and bottled water ought to be stricter,” says Dr. Gleick. “But tap water is better regulated.”
 

4. Drowning in Bottled Waterempty-water-bottles3
Americans buy, consume, and throw away the equivalent of nearly 100 billion 12-ounce plastic bottles of water every year, according to Dr. Gleick’s calculations. That translates into roughly 300 bottles for every man, woman, and child. Laid end to end, these bottles would circle the earth more than 600 times – or reach from the earth to the moon and back 30 times.
 

5. Bottled Water Doesn’t Always Taste Better
In blind taste tests, consumers often cannot tell the difference between bottled and tap water, or between expensive bottled water and cheaper brands.

Different waters have different tastes, depending on the natural minerals found in them. But blind taste test after blind taste test has shown that bottled water is not consistently preferred over tap water.
 

6. Few Water Bottles Get Recycledempty-water-bottles dump
While most plastic bottles are “recyclable,” few are actually recycled. In fact, says Dr. Gleick, about seven of 10 plastic water bottles get incinerated, dumped into landfills – or left as litter.

Most plastic water bottles are made of polyethylene terephthalate (PET). This wonderful plastic (tasteless, clear, light, flexible, strong) could be recycled and made into new bottles, but it isn’t. Even the fraction of PET that is recycled ends up being “downcycled” into clothes, carpet, toys, and packaging materials.
 

7. Where Does it Really Come From?
Bottled water brand names can be misleading.water-bottle-stream

We get “Arctic Spring Water” from Florida, “Everest” water from Texas, “Glacier Mountain” water from Ohio and New Jersey, and “Yosemite” water from Los Angeles.

Says Dr. Gleick, more stringent rules about bottled water labels would require honest information on where the water comes from, how it has been treated or processed, and where the consumer can go to get up-to-date and independent information on water quality.
 

8. Are Bottles Replacing Fountains?
As bottled water sales have risen in the U.S., public water fountains have been disappearing.

In 2007, for example, the University of Central Florida opened its brand-new 45,000-plus seat football stadium, which had been built without a single water fountain, says Dr. Gleick. In the opening game at the stadium, 78 people had to be treated for heat-related illness.

After the debacle and a Facebook backlash, the stadium installed scores of fountains.

Modern water fountains can chill and filter water and be designed with taps to fill refillable bottles.
 

9. Bottled Water Isn’t Pushing Aside Soda
The bottled water industry says drinking bottled water is good because it’s leading us to cut back on our consumption of soft drinks. In fact, says Dr. Gleick, sales of bottled water and carbonated soft drink are both growing, at the expense of tap water.

Americans now drink more bottled water than milk.
 

10. It Takes Lots of Oil to Make Water Bottles
It takes the equivalent of 17 million barrels of oil just to make the plastic bottles for our bottled water consumption in the U.S., says Dr. Gleick, who worries that our demand for bottled water puts pressure on our energy resources and contributes to our dependence on foreign oil.
 

Source: http://www.cbsnews.com/pictures/bottled-water-10-shockers-they-dont-want-you-to-know/
 

Other information sources:
 

http://www.nrdc.org/water/drinking/qbw.asp
http://www.businessinsider.com/facts-bottled-water-industry-2011-10?op=1
http://www.forbes.com/sites/williampentland/2013/04/27/the-blindingly-obvious-truth-about-bottled-water/
http://www.rd.com/health/wellness/rethink-what-you-drink/
http://eatdrinkbetter.com/2011/09/29/the-dirty-truth-about-bottled-water/
http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/tapped/
http://www.tappedthemovie.com/

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Bottled Water vs. Tap Water

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November 9  |  Case Studies, News, Research, safe drinking water, water conservation, water preservation, water stewardship  |   Webmaster

Which is Safer?

Concerns over drugs, chemicals, and contaminants in tap water has prompted people all over the world to buy bottled water.  Recent studies have shown that 3 out of 10 households in Canada drink bottled water at home.

It’s estimated that 2.4 billion litres of bottled water were sold in Canada alone last year; about 68 litres per capita.  In fact, bottled water sales have surpassed milk and beer sales in North America, representing a $170 billion industry.

tap water bottled water

 

 

 

 

 

 

But is bottled water necessarily safer or healthier?  A recent investigation compiled by CBC News and reported by Kazi Stastna, provides a well-researched 7 point comparison of water quality, health risks, sustainability and impact on the environment.

At Puroxi, we maintain that proper treatment of an existing water source will provide safe, clean, clear, and nutritonal water, as well as many benefits, without affecting the quality and sustainability of our environment.

Please click here to view the CBC report.

 

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Providing Safe Water in a Disaster

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November 9  |  Editorial, Emergency Preparedness, News, safe drinking water  |   Webmaster

by Mark Owen – founder CEO of Puralytics
 
Every year, our planet experiences an average of 500 natural disasters (Gutierrez, 2008). While some have minimal impact, others may disrupt our standard of living for days, weeks, or even months- restricting our access to food, medical care, and potable water sources. In a recent report by the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre, more than 32.4 million people were displaced worldwide by natural disasters in 2012 (Activity Report 2012, 2013). In an assessment of all global risks, water crises was the 3rdlargest risk, and the one identified as having the largest impact and the most likely to occur (Jennifer Blanke, 2014).
 

Picture3

Figure 1: Aid workers in Tacloban City, Philippines after Typhoon Haiyan bring SolarBags for their own use.

Disaster & Water

In a disaster, electricity is lost and water infrastructure is damaged. Fresh water sources might be polluted with all of the chemical toxins in the region as well as sewage and physical debris. First responders refer to the “Rule of Threes” – 3 minutes without air, 3 days without water, and 3 weeks without food/shelter and people will die. In recent disasters, like the Typhoon in the Philippines, the Tsunami in Japan, Hurricane Sandy and Katrina, and the earthquakes in Haiti, for instance, by Day 3 of the crisis, water became extremely valuable – the most expensive water on the planet – flown in by helicopters by emergency medical personnel and first responders, or supplied by desalination systems on battleships in the harbor. In many of these disasters, the water need continued for 3-18 months after the initial disaster had passed, and became the greatest risk of survival.

In the first days of such a crisis, bottled water is often flown in and distributed, both for the protection of the aid workers and emergency responders, and for those immediately displaced by the disaster. Stored or supplied bottled water runs out in a few days. Within the first week or so, it becomes impractical to supply water this way, and aid agencies switch to interim disinfection strategies like boiling water, chlorine or iodine tablets. These are able to partially disinfect the water and filters can remove some particulates, but they are not able to remove the chemical toxins that are also in the available water sources. While is it is widely recognized that water must be both disinfected and detoxified to be a safe water source, disinfection only solutions are acceptable for short periods as outbreaks are the largest short term risk.

These minimalist disinfection-only solutions were satisfactory for short term solutions with clear water sources, but as the disaster expands to weeks and months, the shortcomings of these methods become significant. Chemical toxins left in the water from the disaster, like petrochemicals, pesticides, cleaning supplies, pharmaceuticals, heavy metals, etc. become a significant threat to health that could impact those affected for years to come. Unfortunately, most people who prepare for a disaster, and most government and aid organization that provide support after a disaster do not have equipment to detoxify the water from these chemical toxins. Water quality quickly becomes the biggest risk after the first days of the crisis, and may continue to be for weeks, months, or even years ahead.

The Puralytics SolarBag is unique in an emergency, because it can both disinfect and detoxify the water, providing safe water that meets US EPA and World Health Organization’s “highly protective” safe water guidelines as shown in Figure 2. Sunlight, even on a cloudy day, activates the nanotechnology coated mesh insert, activating 5 photochemical processes that purify water and reduce or destroy contaminants found in virtually all water sources.

Picture2

Figure 2: Comparing different water treatment technologies, only one is able to both disinfect and detoxify the water.

The SolarBag can treat up to 9 liters of water per day and can be reused over 500 times.
It can be stored for 7 years or more, and can be used by anyone, even children, to purify virtually any water source to make safe water. It is also very light to transport – while 1 gallon of water weighs about 8 lbs, 1 SolarBag which can make 500 gallons weighs only 4 ounces. Imagine if the aid organizations passed out SolarBags instead of bottled water or chlorine tablets in the early days of a disaster how many more people would be helped in a time of need.

 Picture1

Figure 3: Planning for an emergency longer than 3 days requires being able to treat water to both disinfect and detoxify the water.

While this patented technology is relatively new and only mentioned in the most recent survival handbooks, it is widely available in stores and online sources. It has also been shipped to over 50 countries, including the recent disaster in the Philippines, being handed out through organizations like Medical Teams International, Relief International, Forward Edge International, and by the Red Cross. Recently Puralytics won the International Water Association’s Global Honour Award for long term use of the SolarBag in rural villages in Africa. For more information on the SolarBag, see the company’s website – www.puralytics.com

 

References

(2013). Activity Report 2012. Geneva: The Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre.

Gutierrez, D. (2008). Natural Disasters Up More Than 400 Percent in Two Decades. Natural News.

Jennifer Blanke, e. a. (2014). Global Risk 2014, Ninth Edition. World Economic Forum.

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Global Warming

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September 29  |  climate change, Editorial, global warming, Latest News, Opinion, Research  |   Webmaster

The Global Warming debated has heated up again, following the recent release of a report by the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

On one side, the climate change deniers emphasize the fact that global warming has remained relatively stable for the past 17 years.  They maintain that this supports the “Hockey Stick” conclusion that global warming has actually leveled off and therefore not expected to increase in the foreseeable future. 

On the other side, the IPCC continues to insist that climate change is real, is caused by human activity, and continues despite regional differences, over a time line of 1400 years.  Furthermore, it maintains that we will see far more dangerous and potentially irreversible impacts in the decades ahead, if we do not choose to reduce global carbon emissions. There has never been a greater urgency to act than there is now.

Which side is right?  Well, maybe they both are, in their own way.  As with most heated / controversial topics,  everyone has their own strong opinion and many will strive mightily to affirm their agenda.  As their almost religious fervor develops, there will  undoubtedly be misdirection, cherry-picking, half-truths, outright falsehoods, and even personal verbal attacks.  At the heart of this controversy is the credibility of the IPCC position and agenda, as well as their format for accepted, qualified peer reviews.

Nevertheless, no one can dispute the facts that polar ice caps are melting and that the world’s oceans are getting warmer, thus setting up even more change for climate patterns around the world.

We urge you all to do your own independent research and make your own informed conclusions.  We have listed some recent links below, to get you started.

http://www.ipcc.ch/news_and_events/press_information.shtml#.Ukh8F3_NmNg

www.climatechange2013.org/images/uploads/WGIAR5-SPM_Approved27Sep2013.pdf

http://scienceblogs.com/significantfigures/index.php/2013/09/27/what-does-the-2013-ipcc-summary-say-about-water/

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/sep/28/ipcc-climate-change-deniers

http://www.foxnews.com/science/2013/09/27/un-climate-change-report-dismisses-slowdown-in-global-warming/

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2420783/computers-got-effects-greenhouse-gases-wrong.html

http://www.colby.edu/sts/controversy/pages/ipcc_controversy.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_warming_controversy

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-09-27/global-warming-s-slower-pace-hardens-views-on-need-to-act.html

 

 

 

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Poultry News – India

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June 25  |  Case Studies, Latest News, Poultry  |   Webmaster

Poultry News – India

Poultry and Chicken Prices Add to Summer Sorrows

 

Poor Supply, Bad Weather Push up Chicken Prices                                                        19 June 2012,  India Today

INDIA – Thanks to rising cost of chicken feed and the scorching weather, which are affecting poultry production, the price of broiler chicken in retail markets has gone up by about 40-50 per cent in the national Capital over the past two months

Poultry experts said it is due to the supply crunch from Haryana, Rajasthan and Punjab that the price has gone up. Traders at the Ghazipur-based chicken market claimed wholesale price of live broiler has increased from Rs.45-Rs.50 a kg to Rs.100-110 over the past two months. As a result, retail price of dressed chicken has gone up from Rs.120-Rs.140 per kg to Rs.180-Rs.190 a kg.

“Rising price of soy meal is one of the reasons, as it has led to higher cost of production. Poultry farmers have started feeling the pinch due to the rise in the price of chicken feed,” Ricky Thaper, former treasurer of the Poultry Federation of India (PFI), said.

However,Mr Thaper claimed the main reason is the prevailing high temperature which has further aggravated the situation. Another wholesale trader, said last month a lot of chicks died because of bad weather which has resulted in the sudden scarcity in Delhi and NCR areas. “Rise in temperature and humidity along with high power cost have contributed to the problem. Change in weather condition has raised prices.”

“The required temperature for poultry farming is between 24 and 30° Celsius. To maintain such a condition in the prevailing summer of 40°+ temperatures, farmers have to use fans, coolers and sprinklers. It increases power consumption leading to rise in the cost of poultry production,” he said.

The supply of chicken too has gone down by around 50 per cent in recent months. The searing summer heat has led to a sudden rise in chicken mortality rate, leading to reduced supply in the city. 

According to an estimate, the wholesale markets at Ghazipur and INA used to get around 200 trucks of chicken daily to cater to the demands of the city and NCR areas. But now the number has come down to almost half. Sources say that prices could only rise further in the coming days; a respite is expected only once the monsoon sets in and the temperature falls.

“Nowadays, we have been getting around 110-120 trucks. But the demand is showing no signs of coming down, rather, it has been increasing with the opening of new restaurants,” Mr Thaper added.

===========================================================

This is serious news indeed and the entire poultry industry is struggling to regain its stability.

One lucky broiler chicken operator, however, is beating the odds.  How?

He is using Oxy Blast!

Look at these amazing results, in comparison to the rest of the industry:

150% increase in weight gain;  100% improvement in mortality rate;  $30 daily savings in antibiotics;     40% increase in net wholesale price;  200% overall increase in sales & profits with less cost!

 OXY BLAST WORKS!

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The People behind the Water Video

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May 5  |  Case Studies, Latest News, Research, safe drinking water  |   Webmaster

  Learn about the fascinating journey that water takes from the source, to our taps, and back to the source. This story is told through the eyes of BC Water & Waste Association members: the people who work to bring us clean, safe drinking water and protect the environment.   Please share this video with others in your workplace, classroom or home. You could even display it at an event during Drinking Water Week!  

The People Behind the Water Video

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Scrapie Disease

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April 30  |  Editorial, Farm, food safety, Latest News, Livestock, Reports, Tests  |   Webmaster

It seems to be a week of news, on both sides of the border, for transmissable livestock diseases.

Scrapie is a fatal, degenerative disease affecting the central nervous system of sheep and goats.  It is among a number of diseases classified as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSE) and very similar to BSE (mad  cow disease) found in cattle.

A fatal disease that affects sheep and goats has been confirmed at a quarantined sheep farm in eastern Ontario.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says scrapie (SKRAY’-pee) was confirmed in a sheep that recently died on the farm.

The agency says there is no human health risk associated with scrapie.

However, the CFIA aims to eradicate it from Canada as the disease has serious impacts on sheep.

It said in a weekend release that the farm was placed under quarantine because a sheep that originated from there had previously tested positive for scrapie.

Ontario Provincial Police are investigating the removal earlier this month of 31 sheep from the same farm in violation of the quarantine order.

See: http://finance.yahoo.com/news/

 

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Veterinary Group Reaffirms Support for Antibiotics Use

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April 23  |  antibiotics, Beef, Dairy, Editorial, Farm, food safety, Immune System, Latest News, Livestock, Nutrition, Pork, Poultry, Research  |   Webmaster

While there are many sides and opinions to this ongoing debate, we are in full agreement with the following article. As stated in the AVMA statement, it  supports the prudent use of antibiotics: “The judicious use of antimicrobials plays a key role in preserving the health of our nation’s food animals and the safety of our nation’s food supply. Many agree that there is a need for greater veterinary oversight of antimicrobial use in food-producing animals, and the AVMA is currently working with the FDA to develop practical means to increase this veterinary oversight.” 

In other words, prudent use of antibiotics and other microbial products, should be made only when necessary, and not indiscriminately in feeds or in any other attempt to prevent illness and disease.  As medically and scientifically proven, the over-exposure to antibiotics eventually increases our resistance to them, thus diminishing their effectiveness and leaving us even more susceptible to infection and disease.  The key here is the definition of “productive uses” and the need for more direct involvement of the AVMA in advising and regulating the use of antibiotics and antimicrobials.

As mentioned in previous posts, any wide-encompassing and long-term policies should be “based on solid science and risk-based assessment, and not on anecdotal reports and speculation.” (sic)  (as evidenced by the recent uproar of LFTB).

Following is the full text of the statement by the American Veterinary Medical Association …

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) reaffirmed its support of the responsible use of antibiotics in food animals after a federal court ruling demanded that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) start proceedings to withdraw approval of certain uses of antibiotics used in food production.

United States Magistrate Judge Theodore H. Katz ruled March 22 that the FDA must start proceedings to withdraw approval of what the FDA currently refers to as “production uses” of penicillins and tetracyclines in food-producing animals. As part of the withdrawal process, manufacturers of the products can request hearings to allow them to provide scientific evidence that the production use of antimicrobial products does not pose a threat to public health.

“The AVMA acknowledges the growing concern regarding antimicrobial use and resistance in animals and people, and supports the judicious use of antimicrobials to maximize public and animal health benefits while minimizing risks,” says AVMA Chief Executive Officer Ron DeHaven. “The judicious use of antimicrobials plays a key role in preserving the health of our nation’s food animals and the safety of our nation’s food supply. Many agree that there is a need for greater veterinary oversight of antimicrobial use in food-producing animals, and the AVMA is currently working with the FDA to develop practical means to increase this veterinary oversight.”

DeHaven cautions, however, that any decision to withdraw approval or ban any antimicrobial uses should be based on solid science and risk-based assessment, and not on anecdotal reports and speculation.

“It is crucial that safe and effective antimicrobials remain available for use in veterinary medicine to ensure the health and welfare of animals and, consequently, the health of humans,” DeHaven says. “The AVMA will continue to work closely with the FDA to formulate a sound, science-based strategy to deal with this complex issue.”

The AVMA, founded in 1863, is one of the oldest and largest veterinary medical organizations in the world, with more than 82,500 member veterinarians worldwide engaged in a wide variety of professional activities. For more information about the AVMA, visit www.avma.org.


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Animal Antibiotics Over-use

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April 22  |  antibiotics, Beef, Farm, food safety, Immune System, Latest News, News, Pork, Poultry, Reports, Tests  |   Webmaster

Following is one of the first major media stories exposing the threat to human health of the over-use of antibiotics in livestock, presented by Katie Couric with CBS. It is still compelling, in light of the recently announced FDA guidelines.

“It’s scary, I mean, you just can’t describe it really,” said Bill Reeves.

Two years ago, 46-year-old Bill Reeves, who worked at a poultry processing plant in Batesville, Arkansas, developed a lump under his right eye.

“It went from about the size of a mosquito bite to about the size of a grapefruit,” he said.

CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric reports doctors tried several drugs that usually work on this potentially deadly infection: methicillin resistant staph or MRSA – before one saved his life.

WebMD: MSRA

“You go from a just regular day to knowing you may die in a couple of hours,” Reeves said.

He wasn’t the only worker from this farming community to get sick. Joyce Long worked at the hatchery, handling eggs and chicks. She got MRSA at least a dozen times, and had to try several drugs as well.

“It was real painful. Shots don’t help, because it’s so infected, it don’t help much,” she said.

Within weeks, 37 people at the hatchery got sick. They’ve filed personal injury claims against the company, Pilgrims Pride, which has no comment.

This is not an isolated incident and chickens aren’t the only concern. A University of Iowa studylast year, found a new strain of MRSA — in nearly three-quarters of hogs (70 percent), and nearly two-thirds of the workers (64 percent) — on several farms in Iowa and Western Illinois. All of them use antibiotics, routinely. On antibiotic-free farms no MRSA was found.

To read the rest of the story and view the CBS video, follow this link:

http://www.cbsnews.com/2100-18563_162-6191530.html

 

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U.N. Water Report

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April 17  |  Latest News  |   Webmaster

 WHO, U.N.-Water Report Examines Access To Safe Drinking Water, Improved Sanitation

Monday, April 16, 2012

“Nearly 780 million people are deprived of safe drinking water — and 2.5 billion lack access to improved sanitation — all because governments aren’t spending scarce resources wisely, according to a joint report [.pdf] of the World Health Organization and U.N.-Water,” VOA News reports. Though “more than two billion people gained access to safe drinking water and 1.8 billion gained access to improved sanitation” between 1990 and 2010, billions of people still lack these basic services, the report noted, according to the news service.

“The data, collected from 74 developing nations, show countries suffering from a chronic lack of technicians, skilled labor and staff to operate and maintain sanitation and drinking water infrastructure,” VOA writes, adding, “The report says the total amount given in development aid for sanitation and drinking water increased by three percent — to $7.8 billion — from 2008 to 2010, but only half of that amount is allocated to regions where 70 percent of those lacking these services actually live: sub-Saharan Africa, Southern Asia and South-Eastern Asia” (Schlein, 4/12). According to a U.N.-Water press release, “Nearly 80 percent of countries recognize the right to water, and just over half of them the right to sanitation. Realizing the rights to water and sanitation may help targeting resources to unserved population and avoid discrimination in the provision of [water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH)] services” (4/12).

 

For the full report (pdf), click here

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