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Thursday, March 24, 2011

What's in YOUR Water?

No one appreciates a little dirty water like a rat, but I hear you humans don’t quite have the constitution for it. Based on quite a bit of research, the state requires public water systems to disinfect water before it’s piped into homes. Almost all the systems around the state do, but a handful, about 12%, still don’t. There haven’t been any alarming events like the cryptosporidium outbreak in Milwaukee in 1993, but it’s pretty clear the rate of gut-busting illnesses in communities drops in direct relation to the addition of disinfection.

So I’m just not sure what to make of a new bill proposed in both the state Assembly and the Senate that prohibits DNR from making communities disinfect their drinking water (unless the big bad Feds step in and say they have to). Yeah, there’s some expense related to disinfection, but tell that to the mom of a sick pup. The really wild part is that Representative Severson, the author of AB 23 who represents a community that doesn’t disinfect it’s water, is a doctor! Aren’t they the ones who always want to improve the health of the public? I don’t know if I’ll ever understand you humans; sometimes it’s so much more straightforward to just be rat. Maybe if I go to the public hearing next Wednesday it will all make more sense.

1 comment:

  1. The EPA estimates up to 20 MILLION cases of GI illness per year are caused by contaminted drinking water. These happen under the radar, not in dramatic outbreaks, so it's easy to be complacent. But it's clear that ground (well) water is at risk, and that treatment decreases the risk. In the Milwaukee area we've shown that kids who drink well water are more likely to be sick than those who drink Lake Michigan water. (And our data also show bottled water is not a panacea - kids who drink bottled water also get sick more!)