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Water Supply Solutions Essay

1818 words - 7 pages

The human body is made up of nearly 70% of water. It depends on the watercontent to regulate body temperature, help remove waste, cushion the joints, andtransport nutrients and oxygen to billions of cells. Without water, humans would not beable to survive. In Bucks County, we face many environmental problems. We need aflood mitigation plan to avoid damage done to the county every time the Delaware Riverfloods, we also have a growing problem with water contamination, our air quality isamong the worst in the nation, we need a plan to preserve what open space we have left,moreover, littering and vandalism continue to thrive.We need clean water to drink, bathe, water our yards, wash our vehicles, and toput out fires, making water contamination an urgent threat facing our community today.A threat to our water supply is very serious because the effects caused can be deadly.When toxins get into water supplies, they can cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.There are toxins that do not exhibit symptoms right away.They can take years to show negative affects, some can even cause cancer. Theuse of methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) by gasoline companies has declined however,the number of states reporting problems with water contamination has doubled.These facilities supply drinking water to rural counties, schools and cities. Most of thepopulation affected by water contamination are consumers who are not aware of thecontamination. MTBE contamination is bad for you even with parts as low as two perbillion. It can create a bad smelling odor and chemicals can create a foul tasting waterthat is so strong that it becomes inconsumable.Water utility companies must either dilute the MTBE contaminations with cleanwater, install expensive systems to help remove it, or they can abandon the pollutionfilled wells and find alternate water sources that are not contaminated. The AmericanWater Works Association estimates that a nationwide MTBE cleanup and waterreplacement could cost around $29 billion dollars.Oil companies are putting pressure on Congress to provide them with protectionfrom the communities that have discovered serious contamination.In April, documentation provided by consumers as well as the Environmental ProtectionAgency (EPA) persuaded a California jury to find Shell, Texaco, Equilon Enterprisesand other major oil companies liable for selling a substandard product without informingor cautioning people of the possible pollution hazards. As a result, a sixty million dollarsettlement was awarded to South Lake Tahoe, California (U.S. Environmental ProtectionAgency, 2008).Some communities, like South Lake Tahoe, are looking at millions of dollarsin costs in order to clean up MTBE contamination or to replace their contaminated watersupplies. At least sixteen states have started taking extensive measures to ban the use ofMTBE. I hope that a national ban is in the near future.The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) hosted a meeting to giveofficials and...

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