ZRH From Switzerland, joined Nov 1999, 5563 posts, RR: 38 Reply 6, posted (8 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 4038 times:
Of course! Here in Switzerland the tap water is better than a lot of bottled water (there is absolutely no chlorine in it, like for example in NYC). Water here is very clean. The water of the lake of Zurich you could almost drink without much cleaning and disinfecting (it also great to swim in it )
Yes, I drink the water in Anchorage. It's some of the cleanest in the world. EPA requires cities to "clean" a certain amount of contaminants, etc from city tap water during the filtration process. . . the water is so clean here it's not possible to do that - Anchorage always exceeds EPA and other health standards for it's water.
Logan22L From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 15, posted (8 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 3990 times:
Just so you all know, my job is to provide technical support to EPA for tap water regulation in the U.S. A few points:
Municipal water (i.e., water that is provided by a town or city system) is highly regulated here in the U.S. Unfortunately, private wells cannot be regulated in a similar fashion, as you may recognize the impracticality of this.
I recommend that if you drink water from a private well, please consider sending tap water samples to an accredited lab that is proficient in the analysis of drinking water.
As for municipal water, as TheCoz says, sometimes the water tastes like shit, even if it is OK for you. Usually, it is because there is a high percentage or liklihood of bacterial contamination that requires this kind of disinfection. EPA and municipalities are working to develop other means of disinfection to reduce taste issues, but, of course, there are cost implications. Other taste issues arise from natural formations that contain sulfur and other deposits, or surface waters that contain 2-methylisoborneol and geosmin (taste indicator compounds). Often, these are formed by natural decomposition of leaves, etc. in source waters. Again, I and many, many others are working on this.
As for bottled water, it MAY be cleaner, or it may not. It MAY taste better, but taste does not guarantee quality. There are fewer regulations on bottled water than there are on Municipal tap water.
You know, UA, that's a very good point. Here in the U.S., water is tested thorougly at the source (i.e., the water treatment plant), but there are limitations on how much the post-pipe water can be tested. One regulation we have is the lead and copper rule, which requires testing for lead and copper in targeted areas. Lead is an extreme toxin that comes from old piping (here in the U.S., only in older areas or from solder on slightly older copper piping; copper is less of a problem, but has asthetic issues and taste issues). Actually, Beacon Hill is a very old area of the City of Boston, and there are lead issues there. However, since excavation of lead piping in this very hilly and cramped are of downtown Boston is impractical (not to mention undesireable to the rich bastards who live there), the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) adds sodium carbonate to the water to raise the pH of the water to ~9, to minimize leaching of lead from pipes. Everyone in MA pays for this, BTW.
Other than this, though, I wouldn't worry too much about pipes, as much of the deposition is calcium/iron-based, etc. As long as the source water is clean, and lead and copper aren't an issue, you should be OK in terms of piping.
OzLAME From Australia, joined Feb 2005, 338 posts, RR: 0 Reply 20, posted (8 years 6 months 2 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 3960 times:
I am perfectly happy to drink tap water anywhere. I grew up on a sheep station where we drank unfiltered 'rain water' from a corrugated metal tank that was probably full of various organisms and had mosquito larvae and frogs living in it. During a severe drought in the early 1980s we ran out of rain water for several months and drank water pumped from a nearby "tank", which was a big hole dug in the ground, situated to collect run-off from the pastures. God only knows what was in it, but it was the colour of tea with milk and sheep had died in it.
A few years ago we had a water-quality alert here in Sydney; everyone was told to boil their water before drinking as there were giardia and cryptosporidium in it. I didn't bother, I figured that I probably had drunk much worse already.
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