Hydraulic fracturing is the process of drilling into the ground to obtain natural gas and oil from the earth. Commonly known as fracking, this is largely accomplished through the use of sand and water. However, a small amount of chemicals referred to as highly volatile organic compounds (HVOCs) are also used in fracking, and these chemicals can contaminate the well water that makes it into your home. Add that to the fact that surface gas can escape into the water table too, and you have a serious potential health concern for your family.
Hazards of Fracking Water Contamination
Trimethylbenzene, Xylene and Hexane are among the primary HVOCs that can contaminate water as a result of fracking. And while fracking isn’t the only way HVOCs find their way into the environment, exposure can cause a range of health problems, including irritation of the mucous membranes, damage to the central nervous and respiratory systems, deterioration of memory and potentially even cancer. Furthermore, natural gas can escape into the water table, resulting in water that is actually flammable.
Chlorine in Drinking Water
Unfortunately, even chlorine can play a role in making the water you drink and bathe in unhealthy. Chlorine is typically added to water because of its ability to destroy bacteria and other infectious agents that could make you sick. And while its presence is seen as protective in nature, it acts with organic elements naturally found in our water to create a dangerous compound called trihalomethanes. The level of trihalomethanes increases with the amount of chlorine found in your water, yet this compound can irritate the skin and mucous membranes, adversely affect the nervous system, damage or impair internal organs, and increase cancer risk. In fact, some studies show links between chlorine in drinking water and cancers of the breast and bladder.
Protecting Your Home Water Supply
With such serious concerns to consider, you may think turning to bottled water is the answer. However, there are problems with that solution. First, a large percentage of water bottles are made of plastic, which finds its way into our waterways and landfills despite community recycling efforts. Second, bottled water isn’t necessarily any safer for you than tap water.
The answer? A full house water filtration system, such as those sold by WAVE Home Solutions. These water filtration systems can ensure that your entire home water supply is kept free of fracking contamination and trihalomethanes while also reducing your carbon footprint.