Water Contamination: The Lead Source

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

What's in Your Water?

Water is a necessity; however, it seems like access to safe water has become an increasing concern. Over the past three years, water contamination has become more and more relevant.

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Water Contamination

What - is the problem?

Let's start with the basics of water contamination; what is it? Water contamination occurs when any harmful substance seeps into a body of water, thus becoming harmful to those that use or consume it. Water is a very unique substance, in that it is a universal solvent, thus makeing water extremely vulnerable to any form of pollutant. In fact water is able to dissolve more substances than any other liquid on earth. Now, how do chemicals get into our water?

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  1. Agricultural pollution

  2. Sewage and Waste Water pollution

  3. Oil pollution

    • Consumers are the main oil polluter, for example any oil that drips from our cars and into a nearby body of water
    • About 1 million tons of oil makes its way into marine environments each year; HALF of this comes from land-based sources such as factories, farms, and cities.
  4. Radioactive Substance pollution

    • Radiation released by a substance not from the environment, for example nuclear power plants.
    • Radioactive waste is very difficult to dispose of; the waste can stay in the environment for over thousands of years.

Who - does it effect?

Answer: Humans, Animals and the Environment.

One of the more problematic aspects of water contamination occurs in the form of Disease. On average, an illness born from water contamination, is responsible for 3.4 deaths each year. A water filter is not just to remove water contaminents, it also saves lives. Common diseases include: cholera, guinea worm, typhoid, and dysentary.

__Let's Break it Down - How does it directly affect me? __

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Think about how much you, your family and your pets use per day. It's a lot right? Now think about the contaminants you, your family and your pets could consume, due to water pollution. It's overwhelming, right? Now think about the food you eat; they have to get water from somewhere too. Many animals consume plastic, sewage and other chemicals, from water. Therefore, when we eat/drink any fish, meat or dairy products, we are also consuming contaminated water. It is a tough reality, but a very real one; a reality that is growing increasingly more and more problematic as water contamination becomes a greater issue.

Why - should we care?


Infographic Lead in DW 05.06.16a test

Of the water contaminents, lead has become the biggest threat. Lead is found in our water due to corrosion in our service pipes. When metal becomes corroded, lead begins to enter your drinking water; the extent to which lead contaminates your drinking water is based upon a few factors:

  1. water chemistry
  2. the amount of lead
  3. water temperature
  4. the amount of wear in the pipes
  5. how long the water stays in pipes
  6. protective scales or coatings

Any home built, prior to the 1930's, had copper water pipes that were most likely made with lead solder. Even if you are unsure, there are unique identifiers with lead pipes; the main three being: the gray color of the pipes, unable to have a magnet stick to the pipe and lastly, easily scratched with another metal. With these older pipes, if it corrodes, the pipe will rust from the inside and work its way outward. The water may produce discolored water that tends to be brown, yellow, or reddish brown, and the piping will likely clog with rust and collaspe over time.

Lead is a dangerous contaminent. The EPA stated that drinking water is responsible for 20% or more of a person's exposure to lead. The side effects from lead are most apparent in two groups: children and pregnant women. The reason for this, is that pregnant women and children are susceptible to side effects, even with a very low level of lead exposure; thus making lead one of the most dangerous contaminents.

Children can experience:

  1. Behavior and learning problems
  2. Lower IQ and hyperactivity
  3. Slowed growth
  4. Hearing problems
  5. Anemia

Pregnant women can experience:

  1. Reduced growth of the fetus
  2. Premature birth

Recently there have been multiple, high profile, water contamination crises; all of which have dealt with lead: Flint, Michigan, Chicago, Illinois and Newark, New Jersey. All of these crises have had to do with lead from the pipe lines and city officials. In Flint, the main goal was to initially save money, but ended up costing the local government and residents much more. In Newark, local officials told residents that the water was fine, when in fact it was contaminated with high levels of lead. The real question is, can we eliminate growing concern over water contaminents, when our local and state officials will not even tell us the truth?

Know Your Water

Tern created the Know Your Water kit, with the people in mind. Why should safe water be scarce? The Know Your Water kit is a simple system:

  1. Purchase a kit
  2. Fill up the test tubes with water
  3. Tern tests for pH, total dissolved solids (tds), lead, chromium-6, chlourine, flouride and hardness
  4. You now have results on the contaminents in your water

The simplicity of the home kit, makes it easy for families to understand and learn about their water, instead of leaving your health to chance. Not only does Tern offer a water testing kit, it also offers the first home smart water filter. The Smart Faucet was created with one goal in mind, safe AND sustainable water for you and your family. The filter is designed to eliminate 99% of all contaminents, giving you and your family peace of mind, while eliminating and hassle. Trust us, a glass of water tastes a lot better when its lead free!

Past Posts

  • #Waterroundup for December 5th, 2018

    Wednesday, December 5, 2018

  • #Waterroundup for November 28th, 2018

    Wednesday, November 28, 2018

  • #Waterroundup for November 21st, 2018

    Wednesday, November 21, 2018

  • Water Contamination: The Lead Source

    Tuesday, November 20, 2018

  • #Waterroundup for November 14th, 2018

    Wednesday, November 14, 2018

  • Wildfires, Water and the West

    Monday, November 12, 2018

  • #Waterroundup for November 8th, 2018

    Thursday, November 8, 2018

  • Plastic Bottles vs. The Smart Faucet

    Thursday, November 8, 2018

  • #Waterroundup for October 31st, 2018

    Wednesday, October 31, 2018

  • Newark Water Crisis

    Wednesday, October 31, 2018

  • Drink Water to Help You Lose Weight

    Tuesday, September 18, 2018

  • Official Tern Water Press Release: 5% Healthy Water Initiative

    Monday, July 23, 2018

  • Water Main Breaks and Floods Center City Philadelphia

    Monday, July 23, 2018

  • Scott Mazo at Healthy Philly

    Friday, July 20, 2018

  • Philly Water Startup can help Elon Musk bring healthy Water to Flint

    Wednesday, July 11, 2018

  • #waterroundup for July 6, 2018

    Friday, July 6, 2018

  • The Product Development Cycle of the Smart Faucet: Test, Optimize, and Test Some More

    Friday, July 6, 2018

  • #waterroundup for June 29th, 2018

    Friday, June 29, 2018

  • Tern's Work for Healthy Water Never Stops

    Friday, June 29, 2018

  • Tern's Benchmarks for Water Quality

    Wednesday, June 27, 2018

  • Spotlight on Infrastructure: California

    Monday, June 25, 2018

  • #waterroundup for June 22nd, 2018

    Saturday, June 23, 2018

  • Tern Visits the Advanced Manufacturing Show in New York

    Friday, June 22, 2018

  • From our Friends at PiperWai: Activated Charcoal, What Is It and What Does It Do?

    Tuesday, June 19, 2018

  • Why I Believe in Water for Good Health

    Monday, June 18, 2018

  • #waterroundup for June 15th, 2018

    Friday, June 15, 2018

  • The Growing Smart Home Market

    Wednesday, June 13, 2018

  • Spotlight on Infrastructure: Miami

    Monday, June 11, 2018

  • #waterroundup for June 8th, 2018

    Friday, June 8, 2018

  • It Happened in Hinkley

    Wednesday, June 6, 2018

  • Know Your Contaminant: Chromium-6

    Monday, June 4, 2018

  • #waterroundup for June 1st, 2018

    Friday, June 1, 2018

  • What's the Deal with Raw Water?

    Wednesday, May 30, 2018

  • #waterroundup for May 25th, 2018

    Friday, May 25, 2018

  • Know Your Contaminant: Lead

    Thursday, May 24, 2018

  • On the EPA and the National Leadership Summit

    Wednesday, May 23, 2018

  • #waterroundup for May 18th, 2018

    Friday, May 18, 2018

  • Spotlight on Water Infrastructure: New York City

    Wednesday, May 16, 2018

  • The waterroundup for Friday, May 11

    Friday, May 11, 2018

  • The waterroundup for Friday, April 20

    Friday, April 20, 2018

  • How water data can help entire communities live healthier lives

    Thursday, April 5, 2018

  • A Conversation with the Water Department

    Wednesday, March 28, 2018

  • Health Benefits of Water, In Honor of World Water Day

    Wednesday, March 21, 2018

  • Healthy Water at the "Point of Use"

    Tuesday, March 13, 2018

  • How to Make Sure Water From Our Kitchen is Safe to Drink

    Thursday, March 8, 2018

  • Lack of Water Awareness is a Growing Problem, and We’re Fixing That

    Monday, February 26, 2018

  • Tern Water reply to statements made by the Philadelphia Water Department

    Wednesday, February 14, 2018

  • Cape Cod, You Can Now Test Your Water Quality!

    Thursday, December 7, 2017

  • PA, Get Your Water Turbidity Tested!

    Tuesday, November 21, 2017

  • Tern Launches Know Your Water

    Thursday, October 5, 2017

  • Alexandria’s Flood

    Tuesday, July 18, 2017

  • Tern Water Announces Partnership with Cross Properties.

    Tuesday, July 18, 2017

  • There’s Something in the Water: The Betrayal of a Municipal Water System

    Tuesday, July 18, 2017

  • Water for the Modern Age

    Tuesday, November 29, 2016

  • Background Information

    Friday, January 1, 2016

  • Tern Standards, Accuracy, and References

    Friday, January 1, 2016