Bottled Water - William Seo 1 Bottled Water: Pure Water or...

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William Seo 1 Bottled Water: Pure Water or Pure Waste? Walking down aisle seven at the local Publix, being the stereotypical college student with barely enough cash to buy groceries, I quickly scanned each shelf to check for the cheapest bottled water; would it be Dasani, Aquafina, Deer Park, Nestle, or Evian? With the plethora of choices, I quickly decided to put the 35-pack of Aquafina in the cart because of the aesthetic bottle design. As I was walking up the steps of the bus, one miniscule detail of the Aquafina water bottle caught my eye—“Source: Latham, NY Municipal.” The first thought that raced through my mind was that there are no natural springs in New York, which was shortly followed by my second thought that I had just been scammed into buying 35 bottles of tap water for a fourth of my grocery allowance. Flabbergasted and speechless, I helplessly sat on the bus and asked myself, “Did I just get ripped off?” Like myself, much of the American population has converted from drinking tap water straight from the faucet to drinking “pure water” bottled by companies such as Aquafina. After noticing that Aquafina bottled its water from a public source, I asked myself why I had ever switched to drinking bottled water, and the answer was simple: it’s cleaner and healthier, or so I thought. Of the many minerals in water, fluoride is one that is well-known for its health benefits— it helps to prevent and even reverse tooth decay in young and aging children (Fluoride and Water). According to Leona Ayers of the American Medical Association, of the 57 samples of bottled water tested, only 3 samples contained 0.80 to 1.3 mg/L of fluorine, the recommended amount for drinking water (Ayer). Unlike the approximately 5% of samples of bottled water that contained fluorine within the recommended range, 100% of the samples of tap water were shown to have fluorine levels within 0.04 mg/L of the optimal fluorine level of 1.00 mg/L. Surprisingly, not only did bottled water fail in comparison to tap water regarding fluorine levels, but bottled
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William Seo 2 water also failed in comparison to tap water concerning bacterial content (according to the International Bottled Water Association, the second-most popular reason why people buy bottled water is because they think there is less bacteria in it) (Ayer; Fluoride and Water; Why Drink Bottled Water?). While samples of tap water ranged from 0.2 CFUs/mL to 2.7 CFUs/mL, samples of bottled water ranged from less than 0.1 CFUs/mL to 4900 CFUs/mL with six samples
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This note was uploaded on 02/26/2012 for the course CHBE 2100 taught by Professor Staff during the Spring '08 term at Georgia Institute of Technology.

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Bottled Water - William Seo 1 Bottled Water: Pure Water or...

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