Recent survey reveals US drinking water has the highest contamination rate

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19th September 2017 12:45 - Utilities

Recent survey reveals US drinking water has the highest contamination rate

Recent survey reveals US drinking water has the highest contamination rate: A survey conducted by a researcher at the University of Minnesota of Public Health and Orb Media, revealed that drinking water systems in the US contain the highest amount of plastic fibres, per 500ml.  

Overall, the survey sampled 500 millilitres of tap water across a total of five continents including North and South America, Europe, Asia and Africa, to find out if the plastic contaminants found in oceans have made their way to drinking water systems.  

Out of the samples taken, 83 per cent of tap water samples were found to have contained microscopic plastic fibres. Listed below are the average number of plastic fibres found per 500ml of drinking water: 

·       US – 4.8

·       Lebenon – 4.5

·       India – 4

·       Uganda – 2.2

·       Ecuador – 2.2

·       Indonesia – 1.9

·       Europe – 1.9

Furthermore, out of the tap water samples that contained the most plastic fibres, those with the highest contamination rates are as follows:

·       US – 94.4 per cent

·       Lebenon – 93.8 per cent

·       India – 82.4 per cent

·       Uganda – 80.8 per cent

·       Ecuador – 79.2 per cent

·       Indonesia – 76.2 per cent

·       Europe – 72.2 per cent

Following the survey results, survey leader, Professor Roland Geyer, from the University of California and Santa Barbara, comments: “We are increasingly smothering ecosystems in plastic and I am very worried that there may be all kinds of unintended, adverse consequences that we will only find out about once it is too late.”

Additionally, within the research report, Orb Media states that the microscopic fibres found in our water systems can originate from six possible sources:

·       Synthetic fibres from clothing

·       Tyre dust

·       Paint dust

·       Plastic products such as containers, forks, bags and straws

·       Cosmetic products containing microbeads

Nonetheless, procedures regarding filtering or containing these invisible plastics have not yet been identified. Instead, advice has been given for better ways to dispose of plastics. 

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