Perchlorate Pollution In Your Drinking Water: A Hidden Danger To Your Health?
Like you, I have my morning routine that I follow to a tee. I got up this morning the same time I do every morning, stumbled into the kitchen and retrieved my lucky mug from the dishwasher. I shuffled to the sink, turned on the faucet and filled my mug with cool refreshing water from the tap. As I stood there half asleep in my pink bathrobe and slippers and sipped the crisp water from my good old lucky mug, I began to ponder something I had read some time ago, rocket fuel.
I know...I know, it isn’t something that most of us think about when we wake up or anytime in our lives for that matter (unless we’re referring to Aunt Jean’s horrid instant coffee or astronauts), but as I looked into the mug at the crystal clear water, I couldn’t help but think about the parts per billion of rocket fuel floating around in it... well actually the byproduct of rocket fuel, Perchlorate.
Perchlorate and other byproducts have been popping up in our food sources. It has been linked to causing low thyroid functioning and probably is a major contributing factor to the thousands of people who have been diagnosed with low thyroid function. Perchlorate is a thyroid disruptor. It STOPS iodine from being bound by the thyroid. Thus, you get decreased and decreasing levels of thyroid hormone output which leads to hypothyroidism.
Furthermore, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Diseases state that hypothyroidism causes a host of other adverse effects on the cardiovascular system and other organs of the body. Almost 17 million people are exposed to the dangerous levels of perchlorate. Independent researchers think many more are affected.
Even the Centers for Disease Control has put their two cents in on the subject...stating that if an individual (think YOU) has been exposed to levels lower than the national and state standards, healthy thyroid levels are STILL depleted.
An Aside: I can bet their standards are not that high anyway. The only thing that is is the parts per billion of Perchlorate floating around in my lucky mug and worse, my bloodstream.
Now, I don’t know about you, but I’d like my body and all its parts; I'd like to keep them all intact until the day I die...including that butterfly shaped gland in the front of my neck they call the thyroid.
Perchlorates Can Harm Nursing Infants
Recently, new research from the University of Texas Arlington, points to the dangers of Perchlorates in nursing infants. Their studies found that mothers and their nursing babies are at high risk after consuming food and water that has been contaminated with Perchlorate. When a nursing mother feeds her baby, almost half a dose of Perchlorate is passed through her to the baby.
And due to all the systems and bodily functions that thyroid hormone affects in a growing infant, the resultant damage goes much further than just requiring treatment for hypothyroidism. It can potentially scar a child for life due to irreversible developmental problems.
How on earth did a byproduct of rocket fuel end up in our food and water supply? Well, there are perchlorates that are naturally occurring. They can be found in the atmosphere and 'come down to earth' when they condense in precipitation. Another source of naturally occurring perchlorate is the saltpeter deposits in the Chiles mines which are used to make fertilizer.
Years ago, Perchlorate was used to treat a underactive thyroid! However, you can find unnatural or what I like to call 'man made' Perchlorate in road flares, fireworks, rocket fuel and explosives. If you live near the space shuttle or near factories which make fireworks and road flares, have your water supply checked for trace amounts of Perchlorate. Perchlorates end up in the groundwater near these places. However other areas where there are no factories nearby have also been tested for and uncovered this chemical in the groundwater.
Though the EPA has been trying to put in place safety regulations in place, the Pentagon and the White House continue to put up roadblocks by opposing regulation. Why would the White House and the Pentagon consistently and vehemently refuse regulatory and safety guidelines regarding this dangerous chemical and the affects it has on the environment? First of all, those organizations that were contracted by the Department of Defense caused the Perchlorate mess in the first place. Military bases and rocket sites have spilled this chemical into our groundwater and now they refuse to clean it up because they say the cost for regulating it would be too much.
I suppose the health and welfare of the American people and the lives of our newborns and young children are not important!
What can we do as people who are concerned for the environment which by the way adversely affects us all?
A few weeks ago, the EPA announced that it would be accepting public comments for 30 days only. Environmental groups and thyroid experts have called for an extension. I mean, have you read the EPA’s report? It’s a doozy! If experts are calling for more time to read these materials, we as layman will more than likely need some extra time to read and make sense out of it.
It is my belief that we can try and get the EPA to give us an extension so that we as the American public can speak our peace about this situation. If you would like to write for an extension, here is the address:
You can send your comment electronically by visiting Regulations.gov - Follow the on-line instructions for submitting comments - or use regular mail by sending your request for an extension to:
Environmental Protection Agency
Mail code: 2822T
1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20460
Make sure you reference Docket ID No. EPA–HQ–OW–2008–0692
I don’t give a darn about the Department of Defense and their mess-up. I don’t care how much money it’s going to cost them to fix this problem. I care as you do, about the health and wellbeing of our environment and the impact it will have on future generations.