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Which Region of the United States Has the Most Severe Water Issues?


August is National Water Quality month, and as part of our effort to educate the public about the multitude of issues facing America’s water quality we’ve decided to follow a specific theme each week to break down the central problems further.

This week, we explore “Water Scarcity” and delve into the problems plaguing the West, where prolonged drought and mismanagement of resources have led to depleted reservoirs and dipping water quality. If you haven’t guessed, the West Coast and the Southwest have the lowest water quality in the United States overall. Time to find out why.

united states water

There are seven states on our Water Issues Map that are classified at an “extreme” risk for poor water quality, and five of these states are experiencing prolonged water scarcity. Six states at “extreme” risk are all in the West: Montana, Idaho, Washington, California, Nevada, and Arizona.

In a drought situation, immediate action has to be taken to implement policies that make water conservation mandatory in order to keep water quality as high as possible. In these states, we are seeing the repercussions of waiting until the water is gone to look for a solution.

Many of these states are dealing with other issues, like the leeching of uranium, lead, HAAs, and other compounds into the drinking water. But one of the primary issues when approaching water cleanliness is having enough. When states don’t make steadfast action plans when faced with droughts the reserves of water they house will quickly diminish.

When water sources dry up, others must be found. As we’ve seen with the water crisis in Flint, switching water sources introduces many new factors into a water system, and unless it’s carefully tested and scrutinized before implementation many contaminants can be lurking in the new water source.

The amount of time and resources necessary to do this testing is formidable, and many water systems overlook key issues when using new water sources. In addition, in times of drought water might need to be transported to major cities from farther and farther away. Transportation is more expensive and there are more opportunities for contamination before the water reaches your tap.

This information may be overwhelming, but there are definitive steps that families can take to purify the water in their own home. Installing the new Pelican Water purifier is a terrific way to remove potential contaminants (including bacteria) that can may their way into your drinking water. If you live in an area affected by drought, conserve water whenever possible and drink filtered water. The Pelican Water Drinking Water Purifier, unlike an RO system, does not waste water.

Stay tuned throughout the week as we explore more topics related to your water quality. Explore our interactive map for a deep dive into the main water issues all over the country. To research more topics relating to your drinking water, check out our blog.

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