Science

New Study Reveals Shocking Results Of Bottled Water Brands With Highest Plastic Contamination

Filepic: New BeautyFilepic: New Beauty

A new study commissioned by the Story of Stuff Project has found a widespread plastic microfiber–contamination in bottled water.

This may not seem like a huge deal at first—the bottles are made up of plastic, after all—remember that because plastic doesn’t break down, it can accumulate wherever it lands, including our bodies.

Within the study, 19 different bottled water brands were analyzed for microparticle contamination.

On the list to test were Aquafina, Arrowhead, Boxed Water, Crystal Geyser, Dasani, Deer Park, Eternal Water, Evian, Fiji, Glaceau Smart, Ice Mountain, Icelandic Glacial, Ozarka, Penta, Poland Spring, Texas Spring Water, Trader Joe’s Mountain Spring, True Zealand and Zephyrhills.

Once the results were in—Abigail Barrows of Ocean Analytics headed up the testing, and carefully sampled each brand under a microscope—the results were shocking.

The brands with the most contamination were Boxed Water, Fiji, Ozarka and Evian, Icelandic Glacial and Crystal Geyser had the highest levels of contamination, respectively.

Although we don’t fully understand yet the health implications of consuming microplastic, Barrows says the preliminary results of this study are clear: “People are directly ingesting plastic particles when drinking most types of bottled water.”

But how do these plastic particles get bottled? Shockingly enough, a report from the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) says one of the biggest contributors to microfiber pollution comes from the washing of synthetic clothing discharged through washing machine waste. (Several studies have already shown that synthetic clothing is found in the bellies of fish and other seafood, and now it’s entering our bottled water.)

“This investigation demonstrates the ubiquity of microfiber pollution in water writ large, even in products that consumers pay a premium for,” says Stiv Wilson, campaigns director for The Story of Stuff Project. “We need to solve this problem upstream and drastically rethink or dependence on persistent fossil-fueled derived textiles that have a very big unintended consequence.”

If your go-to water brand was listed as a main offender, trying a different brand for now is in your best interest, or better yet, consider investing in a glass bottle and refill it yourself to reduce waste altogether.

– New Beauty

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