The David Suzuki Foundation has produced a new report called The Water We Drink, which compares water quality standards for drinking water across industrialized nations. The report is written in the context of highlighting the need to increase water quality standards in the country of Canada. However, it is also important to note that in many cases, the United States also has standards that are below the recommendations of the World Health Organization, and below those of the EU and Australia. Personally, I would hope for my country to set standards that are higher than those recommended by the WHO, wouldn't you?
As noted on the USGS site, water is of major importance to all living things; in some organisms, up to 90 percent of their body weight comes from water. Up to 60 percent of the human body is water, the brain is composed of 70 percent water, and the lungs are nearly 90 percent water. About 83 percent of our blood is water, which helps digest our food, transport waste, and control body temperature. Each day humans must replace 2.4 litres of water, some through drinking and the rest taken by the body from the foods eaten.
In the United States, local water boards have the responsibility to report the content of pollutants in their local water to their citizens. You can use the table on pages 16 and 17 of the report to analize how your local water compares to global standards. If you buy bottled water, you don't usually get this kind of detailed analysis on the pollutants that may be in the water, nor do you know the source.
Pay attention to what you put into your body. Take responsibility. Hold you local water authorities and the government accountable for the standards that are being set. Demand and prioritize quality. It is a fundamental component of life!