93% of Bottled Water Tested in ‘Shocking’ Study Tainted With Microplastics — View List of Brands Accused

(EnviroNews USA Headline News Desk) — Countless millions of people purchase bottled water believing it’s healthier and safer to drink than tap water. In 2015, the average American consumed about 37 gallons of bottled water, according to bottledwater.org. But now, a new report out of the State University of New York at Fredonia, released in March 2018, found 93 percent of the bottled water it tested was contaminated with microplastics, leaving many consumers stunned.

“This is shocking,” Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Program Erik Solheim told Orb Media (Orb). “Please name one human being on the entire planet who wants plastic in his or her bottle.”

Commissioned by the nonprofit journalism project Orb Media, researchers examined 259 bottles from 11 brands with 27 lots. According to the study, a lot is “an identification number assigned by a manufacturer to a particular production unit.” The bottles came from 19 locations in 9 different countries and included international brands: Aquafina, Dasani, Evian, Nestlé Pure Life, and San Pellegrino; and national brands: Aqua (Indonesia), Bisleri (India), Epura (Mexico), Gerolsteiner (Germany), Minalba (Brazil), and Wahaha (China).

“I think [the contamination] is coming through the process of bottling the water. I think that most of the plastic that we are seeing is coming from the bottle itself. It is coming from the cap; it is coming from the industrial process of bottling the water,” lead researcher Sherri Mason told Agence France Press (AFP).

The study reports an “average of 10.4 microplastic particles >100 um per liter of bottled water,” which is “twice as much as [was measured in a] previous study on tap water.” That study was also commissioned by Orb. In response to the new study, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced it would review the risks of plastic in drinking water, which the organization says up to this point are still relatively unknown with regards to the microplastics found in bottled water.

“There are connections to increases in certain kinds of cancer, lower sperm [counts], [and] increases in conditions like ADHD and autism,” Mason told AFP. “We know that they are connected to these synthetic chemicals in the environment, and we know that plastics are providing kind of a means to get those chemicals into our bodies.”

Microplastics have also been found in beer, fish, and sea salt and no one knows at this point what happens to them in the body. However, a spokeswoman for the UK Food Standards Agency told The Independent it was unlikely the amount of microplastics found in the water would harm consumers. Still, people are concerned about bioaccumulation over time in people who drink bottled water regularly.

“There is no scientific consensus on testing methodology or the potential health impacts of microplastic particles. Therefore, this study’s findings do nothing more than unnecessarily scare consumers,” the International Bottled Water Association wrote in a press release. “Consumers can remain confident that bottled water products, like all food and beverages, are strictly regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and, thus, are safe for consumption.”

The report has not been peer-reviewed or published in a scientific journal yet, which leaves it open to criticism. Still, with recent studies by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) showing 170 million homes in the U.S. are drinking water contaminated with radiation, while 250 million Americans are consuming Chromium 6 with their water, many people are wondering where to turn to get safe, pure H2O.

“We don’t even know all the chemicals in plastics,” Jane Muncke, Managing Director of the Food Packaging Forum, told Orb. “There’s so many unknowns here.” According to Muncke, the plastics could be getting lodged in bodily tissue.

RELATED STORIES ON PLASTIC POLLUTION FROM ENVIRONEWS

Want Some Salt With Your Plastic? – Study: 17 of 17 Sea Salt Brands Littered With Petrochemicals

(EnviroNews World News) – A study published April 6, 2017, in Nature.com’s Scientific Reports, examined 17 sea salt brands from eight different countries and found chemical impurities in all 17 samples. The primary contaminants include microplastics and pigments associated with textile, rubber and fiberglass products. The study was…

(EnviroNews World News) – Zooplankton have been captured on film feasting on plastic microbeads for the first time New Scientist magazine has reported. The entire three hour event took place inside a single drop of water and was taped under the microscope by Five Films. The unique footage…

(EnviroNews World News) – There can be little dispute: the world is in a plastic conundrum – and the oceans are being hardest hit. Being filled with plastic bags, water bottles, lighters, milk cartons, and countless other plastic consumer items at a flabbergasting pace, things aren’t looking good…

(EnviroNews California) – Lorin Trodderman of the Santa Cruz, California-based company Blue Lotus takes us through a tale of plastic pandemonium as he explains the devastation of plastic bags in our eco system, while simultaneously offering a simple and empowering solution. In this educational interview, Trodderman eloquently explains…

(EnviroNews World News) – It’s no secret the world’s oceans are now completely littered with plastic due to human activities. By now, many people have also been made aware of the gigantic gyres in the midst of the oceans, where plastic is whirled by currents into massive “garbage…

(EnviroNews World News) – First a plastic straw, and now a large plastic fork. These are two of the objects removed from the nostrils of ancient endangered sea turtles this year by researchers. On December 6, 2015, Nathan J. Robinson, Field Director of The Leatherback Trust, was busy…

(EnviroNews California) – Monte Rio, California – Sonoma County, California is considered one of the most progressive, green and environmentally friendly counties in the United States, but a community Easter egg hunt that went down on March 26, 2016, called the area’s green reputation into question. EnviroKids correspondent…

OTHER RELATED STORIES FROM ENVIRONEWS

Chromium 6, the ‘Erin Brockovich Carcinogen,’ Now in the Drinking Water of 250m Americans, Report Reveals

(EnviroNews USA Headline News Desk) – Washington D.C. – Hexavalent chromium (chromium 6), nicknamed the “Erin Brockovich Carcinogen,” is said to “[cause] cancer when ingested at even extraordinarily low levels.” Created as a byproduct from numerous industrial activities, the substance is now in the drinking water of 250…

(EnviroNews DC News Bureau) – More than 170 million Americans, or around 52 percent of the entire population, may be at risk of radiation exposure through their drinking water, according to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), one of the country’s leading water testing organizations. The EWG published its…