Archives : 2013 : December

Filtering Water When in Remote Locations

December 27th, 2013

Just because it’s beautiful does not mean the water is clean.

streaming waterImage via Manuel Calavera (Flickr)

Filtering Water When in Remote Locations

If you’ve been following me online, you know that I love nature. I love to spend time outdoors enjoying all this beautiful planet has to offer, especially bodies of water. If you’re a hiker, or a camper, or somebody who loves to explore remote locations, you know the importance of having safe drinking water in great supply with you. Whether you’re out on a day hike, or planning to rough it for a couple of days, you cannot survive without clean drinking water. This seems simple enough, doesn’t it? Just make sure you have enough water with you. It’s not as simple as it may seem, however.

It’s a Matter of Weight

When traveling to a remote location, whether by foot or by vehicle, you cannot have cases of bottled water with you. You don’t have the ability to carry that much weight, nor the space in which to pack it. It’s simply not a viable plan to lug a ton of heavy water jugs on a trek. You need to find a way to get the water you need using lightweight, compact options.

The Best-laid Plans…

The best-laid plans can also go wrong, no matter how seasoned you are. You might have the perfect portable way of filtering water to ensure you have plenty of H2O at your disposal. You might also become trapped in a remote location due to unexpected weather, or you might get lost. The best-laid plans do always see themselves through to fruition. You need a backup plan in case of emergency.

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How Much Water Should You Drink? There’s an App That Will Tell You

December 18th, 2013

There’s an app for that!

drink water

Image via Pseph (Flickr)

How Much Water Should You Drink? There’s an App That Will Tell You

Are you consuming enough drinking water daily for your optimal dietary needs? Do you know how much water to drink for your body weight? Do you understand the benefits of drinking water? These are questions I ask people all the time because as a water expert, I understand the need we all have to drink an adequate amount of water daily. The adult human body is made up of approximately 50 to 65-percent water. You lose some of that water through urination and sweat. Dehydration is deadly. Do you drink enough water? Don’t worry, there’s an app that will tell you!

Why Drink Water?

The reason it is important to determine how much water to drink on a daily basis is because there are numerous health benefits of drinking water. Staying properly hydrated regulates your metabolism, which helps you maintain a healthy weight. Keeping hydrated by drinking water also keeps your organs, especially your kidneys, function properly and flushes out toxins. Hydration helps your alertness, keeps your body temperature in check, and helps to regulate your blood pressure. You cells, tissues, joints, and muscles all need water. That’s why you should drink plenty of it. Here are some apps to help you ensure that you stay hydrated throughout the day. Read more »

Can Your Water Pipes Cause Disease?

December 12th, 2013

Can your water pipes cause disease?

Written By: Jerry Alonzy

water pipe

Image via webhamster (Flickr)

I’m old enough to remember when it was inconceivable to drink water from a bottle. After all, we had water available from the tap! What sense would it make to pay up to 500 times more for water that came in a plastic bottle?

The fact is, today people who have perfectly safe water coming out of their faucet are paying top dollar for water bottled somewhere else! And though it would have been unthinkable “way back when”, most people who do so believe that bottled water is more healthy.

And they may be right! Indeed, most of us have no idea what we are putting into our bodies when we chug down a glass of cool tap water. There may be reason for concern, whether your home uses city water or a well system. And the reason may be in the pipes your water travels through!

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Tips for Maintaining Home Water Quality

December 10th, 2013

Never assume the water running from your tap is of high quality.

home water faucet

Image via Canadian Family (Flickr)

Tips for Maintaining Home Water Quality

One of the reasons I became an environmentalist is because I have always loved water. I grew up around water, I played in water, and I still play in water with my dog whenever I have the chance. I chose a career blogging about water and the importance of water quality because it is such a critical topic that everyone in the world should be educated about. This includes teaching people about home water quality. What is water quality? It’s ensuring that the water you use for both consumption and bathing is safe for you and your family.

Water Basics

You probably remember in school that water, known by its chemical formula H2O, is a chemical compound made up of one part oxygen and two parts hydrogen atoms. Water is a compound that cannot be destroyed. When hot, it evaporates into the earth’s atmosphere only to recycle into rain and fall back down on the earth again. Water can, however, absorb harmful substances, making it dangerous for consumption if polluted. This is why in the United States, the EPA is in charge of setting water quality standards all municipalities must follow to ensure their citizens have a safe water supply. Read more »

Interview with Dr. Michael J. McGuire

December 4th, 2013

Image via Wikipedia

Dr. Michael J. McGuire is an environmental engineer whose career has focused on drinking water quality and the history of water. His expertise on the subject of water led him to publish numerous articles and books, such as The Chlorine Revolution. He also frequently updates his two blogs: This Day in Water History and Safe Drinking Water Dot Com, and remains active on twitter. He continues to write extensively on this important world-wide issue.

Since 1971, he has been active in the American Water Works Association (AWWA), and has been a member of other societies such as the American Society of Civil Engineers, the American Chemical Society and the Water Environment Foundation. He received his PhD from Drexel University and has since won awards for his excellence in environmental engineering. In 2009, he was elected to the National Academy of Engineering.

Q: What sparked your interest in safe drinking water and water history?

A: I was fortunate to land my first job with the Philadelphia Water Department in 1969. The theoretical information that I had learned about water quality as an undergraduate was brought to life as I participated in projects to safeguard the drinking water for that great city. Samuel S. Baxter, the water commissioner for Philadelphia, convinced me that public service associated with providing safe water was absolutely the best way to spend my career.

The water history bug bit me in 2005 when I wrote an article for the AWWA Journal about the revolutions that occurred in U.S. drinking water disinfection over the previous 97 years. Chlorinating the Jersey City water supply in 1908 was the first revolution, and I became fascinated with the people who were responsible and with the barriers they faced to implement effective water treatment processes. At that time, waterborne disease was a leading killer especially of very young children. What Dr. John L. Leal and George Warren Fuller did back then was extraordinary, and their exploits fed my desire to learn more about the roots of our profession.

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