02/8/20

Winners of the 2019 Fire and Ice Kids Art Contest

Announcing the winners of the 2019 Fire and Ice Kids Art Contest hosted by Frogs Are Green. It was our 10th annual contest and we had a wonderful response from around the world and right here in the USA, from California to Florida, and Jersey City.

Thanks to our judges for 2019: Wendell Minor, Amy Elise de Jong, Jenna Firshein, Louis Aligo, Beverly D’Andrea and Mark Lerer.

Winners – Ages 3-6

1st place: NG Pak Hay Hayden, 5 years old, Hong Kong
2nd place: Chatchayanich Worabut, 6 years old, Thailand
3rd place: Mak Marcella Carissa, 4 years old, Hong Kong

Honorable Mentions:

Lai Wing Ka, 5 years old, Hong Kong
Or Hoi Man, Hailey, 4 years old, Hong Kong
Lui Yan Hei, Gloria, 4 years old, Hong Kong
Huang Tzu Chiao, 5 years old, Taiwan
Fong Shing Yan, Romeo, 4 years old, Hong Kong

1st-NG-Pak-Hay-Hayden-5-years-old-Hong-Kong-2019

1st-NG-Pak-Hay-Hayden-5-years-old-Hong-Kong-2019

2nd-Chatchayanich Worabut, age 6, Thailand, 2019

2nd-Chatchayanich Worabut, age 6, Thailand, 2019

3rd-MAK MARCELLA CARISSA -4yrs-Hong Kong,2019

3rd-MAK MARCELLA CARISSA -4yrs-Hong Kong,2019

LAI WING KA_5 yrs_Hong Kong, 2019

LAI WING KA_5 yrs_Hong Kong, 2019

Or Hoi Man, Hailey-4 yrs-Hong Kong-2019

Or Hoi Man, Hailey-4 yrs-Hong Kong-2019

Lui Yan Hei, Gloria-4 yrs-Hong Kong-2019

Lui Yan Hei, Gloria-4 yrs-Hong Kong-2019

Huang Tzu Chiao-5 years old-Taiwan,Industrial Forest, 2019

Huang Tzu Chiao-5 years old-Taiwan,Industrial Forest, 2019

Fong-Shing-Yan-Romeo-4-yrs-Hong-Kong-2019FRG

Fong-Shing-Yan-Romeo-4-yrs-Hong-Kong-2019FRG

1st-NG-Pak-Hay-Hayden-5-years-old-Hong-Kong-2019 thumbnail
2nd-Chatchayanich Worabut, age 6, Thailand, 2019 thumbnail
3rd-MAK MARCELLA CARISSA -4yrs-Hong Kong,2019 thumbnail
LAI WING KA_5 yrs_Hong Kong, 2019 thumbnail
Or Hoi Man, Hailey-4 yrs-Hong Kong-2019 thumbnail
Lui Yan Hei, Gloria-4 yrs-Hong Kong-2019 thumbnail
Huang Tzu Chiao-5 years old-Taiwan,Industrial Forest, 2019 thumbnail
Fong-Shing-Yan-Romeo-4-yrs-Hong-Kong-2019FRG thumbnail

Winners: Ages 7-9

1st place: Lucas Nam, 9 years old, California, USA
2nd place: Wimootta Aramsaengchan, 8 years old, Thailand
3rd place: Claire Chong, 9 years old, California, USA

Honorable Mentions:

Huang Tzu Wei, 8 years old, Taiwan
Grace Gao, 9 years old, USA
Duru Karadede, 9 years old, Turkey

1st-Lucas Nam, 9 years old, CA, USA, 2019

1st-Lucas Nam, 9 years old, CA, USA, 2019

2nd-Wimootta Aramsaengchan, age 8, Thailand, 2019

2nd-Wimootta Aramsaengchan, age 8, Thailand, 2019

3rd-Claire Chong, 9 years old, California, USA, 2019

3rd-Claire Chong, 9 years old, California, USA, 2019

Huang Tzu Wei_8 years old_Taiwan_Garbage forest, 2019

Huang Tzu Wei_8 years old_Taiwan_Garbage forest, 2019

Grace Gao_9 yrs_US, 2019

Grace Gao_9 yrs_US, 2019

DURU KARADEDE_9YEARS OLD_FROM TURKEY__GLACIER MELTING, 2019

DURU KARADEDE_9YEARS OLD_FROM TURKEY__GLACIER MELTING, 2019

1st-Lucas Nam, 9 years old, CA, USA, 2019 thumbnail
2nd-Wimootta Aramsaengchan, age 8, Thailand, 2019 thumbnail
3rd-Claire Chong, 9 years old, California, USA, 2019 thumbnail
Huang Tzu Wei_8 years old_Taiwan_Garbage forest, 2019 thumbnail
Grace Gao_9 yrs_US, 2019 thumbnail
DURU KARADEDE_9YEARS OLD_FROM TURKEY__GLACIER MELTING, 2019 thumbnail

Winners: Ages 10-12

1st place: Angela Kim, 11 years old, California, USA
2nd place: Viara Pencheva, 10 years old, Bulgaria
3rd place: Olivia Jung, 12 years old, Canada

Honorable Mentions:

Napatson Nurat, 12 years old, Thailand
Emelin Saldana-Montes, 11 years old, MS 40, New Jersey, USA
Destiny Garcia, 11 years old, MS 40, New Jersey, USA
Worth Lodriga, 10 years old, Philippines
Kate Yeaseo Jeong, 11 years old, California, USA

1st-Angela Kim, 11 years old, CA, USA, 2019

1st-Angela Kim, 11 years old, CA, USA, 2019

2nd-VIARA PENCHEVA_10 years old_BULGARIA, 2019

2nd-VIARA PENCHEVA_10 years old_BULGARIA, 2019

3rd-Olivia Jung, age 12, Canada, 2019

3rd-Olivia Jung, age 12, Canada, 2019

Napatson Nurat, 12 yrs old, Thailand, 2019

Napatson Nurat, 12 yrs old, Thailand, 2019

Emelin Saldana-Montes, 11 yrs, MS 40, United States, 2019

Emelin Saldana-Montes, 11 yrs, MS 40, United States, 2019

Destiny Garcia, 11 yrs, MS 40 United States, 2019

Destiny Garcia, 11 yrs, MS 40 United States, 2019

Worth-Lodriga-10-yrs-old-Philippines-lion, 2019

Worth-Lodriga-10-yrs-old-Philippines-lion, 2019

Kate Yeaseo Jeong,11 years old, CA, USA, 2019

Kate Yeaseo Jeong,11 years old, CA, USA, 2019

1st-Angela Kim, 11 years old, CA, USA, 2019 thumbnail
2nd-VIARA PENCHEVA_10 years old_BULGARIA, 2019 thumbnail
3rd-Olivia Jung, age 12, Canada, 2019 thumbnail
Napatson Nurat, 12 yrs old, Thailand, 2019 thumbnail
Emelin Saldana-Montes, 11 yrs, MS 40, United States, 2019 thumbnail
Destiny Garcia, 11 yrs, MS 40 United States, 2019 thumbnail
Worth-Lodriga-10-yrs-old-Philippines-lion, 2019 thumbnail
Kate Yeaseo Jeong,11 years old, CA, USA, 2019 thumbnail

Winners; Ages 13-17

1st place: Jude Atchley, 16 years old, McNair Academic High School, Jersey City, NJ, USA
2nd place: Seohee Choi, 14 years old, California, USA
3rd place: Sujita Kongvach, 17 years old, Thailand

Honorable Mentions:

Amelia Stebbing, 17 years old, Florida, USA
Grace Thomas, 16 years old, USA
Ream Elkawaga, Age 16, McNair Academic High School, Jersey City, NJ, USA
Ekansha Tabhane, 13 years old, USA

1st-A Frog's View, by Jude Atchley, Age 16, McNair Academic High School, Jersey City, NJ, USA, 2019

1st-A Frog's View, by Jude Atchley, Age 16, McNair Academic High School, Jersey City, NJ, USA, 2019

2nd-Seohee Choi, 14 years old, CA, USA, 2019

2nd-Seohee Choi, 14 years old, CA, USA, 2019

3rd-Sujita Kongvach, 17 yrs old, Thailand, 2019

3rd-Sujita Kongvach, 17 yrs old, Thailand, 2019

Amelia Stebbing, 17, Jensen Beach Florida, 2019

Amelia Stebbing, 17, Jensen Beach Florida, 2019

Grace Thomas, age 16, United States, 2019

Grace Thomas, age 16, United States, 2019

Bleeding Into Life By Ream Elkawaga, Age 16, McNair Academic High School, Jersey City, NJ, USA, 2019

Bleeding Into Life By Ream Elkawaga, Age 16, McNair Academic High School, Jersey City, NJ, USA, 2019

Ekansha Tabhane, Age 13, United States of America, 2019

Ekansha Tabhane, Age 13, United States of America, 2019

1st-A Frog's View, by Jude Atchley, Age 16, McNair Academic High School, Jersey City, NJ, USA, 2019 thumbnail
2nd-Seohee Choi, 14 years old, CA, USA, 2019 thumbnail
3rd-Sujita Kongvach, 17 yrs old, Thailand, 2019 thumbnail
Amelia Stebbing, 17, Jensen Beach Florida, 2019 thumbnail
Grace Thomas, age 16, United States, 2019 thumbnail
Bleeding Into Life By Ream Elkawaga, Age 16, McNair Academic High School, Jersey City, NJ, USA, 2019 thumbnail
Ekansha Tabhane, Age 13, Country United States of America, 2019 thumbnail

Winners of “Best Environmental Message 2019”

1st Place: Zhang Anwen, 6 years old, Hong Kong
2nd Place: Jude Atchley, 16 years old, Jersey City, New Jersey, USA
3rd Place: Fong Yuk Chit, 8 years old, Hong Kong

Honorable Mentions:

Huang Tzu Chiao, 5 years old, Taiwan
Wirin Sukthongchalyakul,7 years old, Thailand
Chan Man Yee, 6 years old, Hong Kong
Kumud Pathak, 9 years old, USA
Jerrick Kamaraj, 11 years old, Jersey City, New Jersey, USA
Katha Patel, grade 12, Jersey City, NJ, USA

1st Place Winner Zhang Anwen, 6 years old, Hong Kong

1st Place Winner Zhang Anwen, 6 years old, Hong Kong

2nd Place Winner Jude Atchley, 16 years old, McNair Academic High School, Jersey City, NJ, USA

2nd Place Winner Jude Atchley, 16 years old, McNair Academic High School, Jersey City, NJ, USA "A Frog's View"

3rd Place Winner Fong Yuk Chit, 8 years old, Hong Kong

3rd Place Winner Fong Yuk Chit, 8 years old, Hong Kong

Huang Tzu Chiao, 5 years old, Taiwan,

Huang Tzu Chiao, 5 years old, Taiwan, "Industrial Forest"

Wirin Sukthongchaiyakul, 7 years old, Thailand

Wirin Sukthongchaiyakul, 7 years old, Thailand

Chan Man Yee, 6 years old, Hong Kong

Chan Man Yee, 6 years old, Hong Kong

Kumud Pathak, 9 years old, USA

Kumud Pathak, 9 years old, USA

Jerrick Kamaraj, 11 years old, Jersey City, NJ, USA

Jerrick Kamaraj, 11 years old, Jersey City, NJ, USA

Katha Patel, grade 12, Jersey City, NJ, USA

Katha Patel, grade 12, Jersey City, NJ, USA

1st-Place-Zhang-Anwen-6-yrs-Hong-Kong-2019 thumbnail
2nd-Place-A Frog's View, by Jude Atchley, Age 16, McNair Academic High School, Jersey City, NJ, USA, 2019 thumbnail
3rd-Place-Fong-Yuk-Chit-8-yrs-Hong-Kong-2019 thumbnail
Huang Tzu Chiao-5 years old-Taiwan,Industrial Forest, 2019 thumbnail
Wirin Sukthongchaiyakul, age 7, Thailand-2019 thumbnail
Chan-Man-Yee-6-yrs-Hong-Kong-2019 thumbnail
Kumud Pathak, 9 years, USA-2019 thumbnail
Jerrick-Kamaraj-11-yrs-old-Jersey-City-NJ-USA-2019 thumbnail
KATHA-PATEL-JERSEY-CITY-NJ-USA-GRADE-12-2019 thumbnail

Winners of “Best Black and White Artwork 2019”

1st Place: Setthasan Jirathanaprasert, 14 years old, Thailand
2nd Place: Hermes Tsai, 9 years old, USA
3rd Place: Kyeongwon Lee, 15 years old, USA

Honorable Mention:

Sunattra Kongrach, 15 years old, Thailand

1st place, Setthasan Jirathanaprasert, 14 years old, Thailand

1st place, Setthasan Jirathanaprasert, 14 years old, Thailand

2nd place, Hermes Tsai, 9 years old, California, USA

2nd place, Hermes Tsai, 9 years old, California, USA

3rd place, Kyeongwon Lee, 15 years old, California, USA, 2019

3rd place, Kyeongwon Lee, 15 years old, California, USA, 2019

Sunattra Kongvach, 15 yrs old, Thailand, 2019

Sunattra Kongvach, 15 yrs old, Thailand

1st-place-Setthasan-Jirathanaprasert-14-years-old-Thailand-2019 thumbnail
2nd-place-Hermes Tsai, 9 years old, California, USA, 2019 thumbnail
3rd-place-Kyeongwon Lee, 15 years old, California, USA-2019 thumbnail
Sunattra Kongvach, 15 yrs old, Thailand, 2019 thumbnail

Winners of “Best 3D Artwork 2019”

1st Place: Seohee Choi, 14 years old, California, USA
2nd Place: Kate Yeaseo Jeong, 11 years old, California, USA
3rd Place: Claire Chong, 9 years old, California, USA

Honorable Mentions:

Chloe Jin, 10 years old, California, USA
Kristina Danilenko, 7 years old, Russia, Siberia

1st place, Seohee Choi, 14 years old, CA, USA, 3D, 2019

1st place, Seohee Choi, 14 years old, CA, USA

2nd place, Kate Yeaseo Jeong, 11 years old, California, USA, 3D, 2019

2nd place, Kate Yeaseo Jeong, 11 years old, California, USA

3rd place, Claire Chong, 9 years old, California, USA, 3D, 2019

3rd place, Claire Chong, 9 years old, California, USA

Chloe Jin, 10 years old, California, USA, 3D, 2019

Chloe Jin, 10 years old, California, USA

Kristina Danilenko, 7 years old, Russia, Siberia, Novosibirsk city, 3D, 2019

Kristina Danilenko, 7 years old, Russia, Siberia, Novosibirsk City

1st-place-Seohee Choi, 14 years old, CA, USA-3D-2019 thumbnail
2nd-place-Kate Yeaseo Jeong, 11 years old, California, USA, 3D, 2019 thumbnail
3rd-place-Claire Chong, 9 years old, California, USA-3D-2019 thumbnail
Chloe Jin, 10 years old, California, USA, 3D, 2019 thumbnail
Kristina Danilenko, 7 years old, Russia, Siberia, Novosibirsk city, 3D, 2019 thumbnail
07/11/19

What’s that croaking under the Ice? It’s Winter frogs!

by Matt Ellerbeck – Frog Conservationist

When one thinks of encountering wildlife in Ontario, the winter months don’t exactly spring to mind. With the cold temperatures and often considerable snow-pact, many animals are hunkered down. This is especially true for (most) reptiles and amphibians. However, over the last few years I have had the opportunity to observe several frogs during the winter months. This includes several Leopard Frogs (Lithobates pipiens) and one Green Frog (Lithobates clamitans).

Both of these frog species are semi-aquatic and often over-winter in streams or other bodies of water that do not freeze to the bottom. Another important attribute of over-wintering sites is highly oxygenated water, that can keep the frogs from suffocating. Just enough oxygen can be absorbed into the frogs permeable skins to allow them to survive such conditions.

This is why frogs do not fully submerge themselves into the substrates of ponds and creeks, when over-wintering as such burials would prevent this oxygen exchange from occurring.

All the frogs I observed in the winter were in creeks/streams with some current. Often several areas of the water were ice-free. Sometimes the frogs could be see moving around very slowly under the ice. This is why the term over-wintering is appropriate for these animals, as it is not a true hibernation due to the frogs sometimes being active (no matter how lethargic it be).

Seeing a frog in such an environment is an amazing experience!

Leopard frog under thin layer of ice by Matt Ellerbeck, Save All Frogs founder

Leopard Frog observed under a thin layer of ice.

Frogs, being ectothermic, are not usually thought of as an animal that can be active during the winter months, but this fact emphasizes the amazing abilities of frogs to survive in such intense and cold climates.

Although frogs can endure harsh northern winters, they still have a host of other threats that they face. To learn more about the conservation concerns that frog face and how you can help, please visit: www.saveallfrogs.com

Matt Ellerbeck
Frog Advocate & Conservationist
mattellerbeck@frogconservation101.com
www.frogconservation101.com
613-349-2947

06/28/18

Salamander from the Rainforest painted on Catch Basin

Update from the corner of Bleecker Street and Central Avenue in Jersey City Heights!

 

Jersey City’s adopt a catch basin program is thriving! It’s very simple. Sign up to take care of a catch basin (storm drain) and the City of Jersey City will assign an artist to paint something original for you. It’s a win-win situation! The city receives help from the public to keep these drains clear of garbage and snow/ice in the winter and we get beautiful artwork that passers by admire. In addition, because they are of an environmental nature, it helps remind the public to keep the streets clean.

Swati Rastogi and Susan Newman salamander catch basin jersey city heights

Last year I noticed a beautiful artwork done by artist Swati Rastogi and requested her as the artist for my second corner (opposite last year’s frog). I was so excited when she contacted me this week because it was time for her to paint the corner.

Here’s what Swati wrote about this project:

“I never knew what a Salamander was until I was asked by the city to paint one at the corner of Central Avenue & Bleecker Street in Jersey City.

Susan Newman who adopted this catch basin has proudly named it “Biodiversity Matters” and is actively letting the residents know about the program.

Honestly this “adopt a catch basin” campaign is making the city much more vibrant and creating awareness for how important it is to keep the sewers clean.

Thank you for choosing me as your artist!.”

– Swati Rastogi

 

I wrote about this program last year in greater detail, so check out the article about the program and why it’s so important.

Adopt a Catch Basin Frog Art

04/22/18

Protecting Amphibians Through Correct Silvicultural Practices

Recent findings indicate that frogs could be going the way of the dinosaurs. Studies by scientists from the US Geological Survey (USGS) depicted that the number of amphibians is shrinking by an average rate of 3.7% yearly. Despite environmentalists championing for the protection of frogs, hosting amphibian themed art exhibitions and releasing publications to educate, among many other efforts, there is still a significant decline in the number of amphibians, especially frogs. Blame pollution, diseases, climate change and more importantly incessant deforestation.

Protecting amphibians and frogs through the correct silvicultural activities in forests helps in ensuring their continuity. While tree harvesting is essential for electricity poles, fuel, the paper industry, and construction, it should not be done in a way that it leads to the loss of amphibian habitats.

Photo by Stefan Steinbauer on Unsplash

The Right Pruning Tools

In forest activities such as pruning, trimming, and the harvesting of firewood, chainsaws are preferably the best tools. Why? Unlike harvesters which fell many trees at a time, chainsaws cut down one tree at a time. This ensures animal habitats are not destroyed during the operation and that seedlings and saplings are protected. These machines are portable making pruning among other activities in various locations easier.

While chainsaws come in different sizes, small chainsaws are preferably the best, especially chainsaws powered by a lithium-Ion battery. These particular type of chainsaws are eco-friendly since they don’t release noxious fumes into the atmosphere when pruning or trimming trees. Furthermore, they don’t cause noise pollution and can be operated easily since they are not heavy. However, when operating a chainsaw it is very important to have the knowledge on how to operate one safely. Other brilliant tools you can use when pruning a tree post include loppers and pole pruners.

Correct Pruning

Pruning is done to remove any overgrown tree branches, stems, and any deformed tree parts. When pruning is done in the correct manner it results in high-quality timber which directly reflects on value and price. Correct pruning, according to A-Absolute Tree Services, involves making sure that a third of the living branches are left after pruning. Right timing on when to prune is critical especially if the area to be pruned is a wildlife shelter. Furthermore, it should be done in a proper way such that the game cover is not destroyed.

Recommended Pruning Techniques

Target pruning is one the best methods of pruning, as stated by Research Gate, since one is able to leave tree parts intact and minimize bole’s tissue damage. Canopy pruning is another recommended pruning technique as it enables light penetration. This allows for the growth of grasses and other plants and this encourages survival of amphibians and frogs. During pruning, the windward side should be taken into consideration as amphibians especially frogs which breathe through their skin, could be easily affected by debris-carrying wind.

Utility Poles

In the United States, most utility poles are made of wood, despite the emergence of steel utility poles. This is because wood is a good insulator and is relatively cheap due to the high availability of trees. Among the trees popularly used are red cedars, Southern yellow pines, and Western yellow pines as they produce straight poles. Poles are selected while still standing in the forest, then the felling process begins.

Most of the times the right procedures and techniques are not used in this process. Unfortunately, flush cutting is observed on pruned trees that are meant for utility poles. Tree topping is also another wrong technique that not only gives an ugly view of the forest but also, has zero considerations for potential wildlife habitats. If the right equipment is not used, the forest environment could be adversely affected. This is why knowledge on the right way of pruning and harvesting trees is key, especially with the high demand for poles and timber.

Amphibians and reptiles make the environment greener. They help in natural pest control and act as food for other wildlife. The contribution of frogs to modern medicine is another reason why frogs are so important. With the above-given statistics, it is evident that more needs to be done in order to care of and protect them. Proper environmental care, especially in the forest, and curbing pollution will go a long way in preserving these species for generations to come.

Written and researched by Jennifer Dawson

11/19/17

Colorful Catch Basins around Jersey City Star a Red-eyed Tree Frog

Jersey City, have you seen all the colorful images painted on catch basins all around town?

Our city wants residents and business owners to “adopt a catch basin.” When Frogs Are Green heard about this program, in which artists decorate these basins with whatever images you suggest, we claimed a drain, and now the corner of Central Avenue and Bleecker Street boasts a gorgeous, colorful red-eyed tree frog. We also just claimed the opposite corner which we call Biodiversity Matters. Environmental themes make the most sense.

Red-eyed Tree Frog artwork for catch basin in Jersey City Heights.

Red-eyed tree frog artwork for catch basin in Jersey City Heights.

As you walk around Jersey City, you’ll see a lighthouse, fish, turtles, sea turtles, an octopus, and many other original artworks by different artists. When you join the program and adopt a drain, you get to name it and request a certain image.

This is a great way to give artists work, clean up the streets, and show citizens where rain water goes. Once you claim a drain, you become responsible for keeping it clear from trash and, in the colder months, ice and snow. It’s a useful reminder not to throw garbage down there. Year after year I’ve walked around my neighborhood and seen trash and leaves piling up at these catch basins and trees, like a new sign post for trash. Since the city has a limited amount of street cleaners–actual people who only work main streets and only certain days– getting the public involved will help.

 

About the “Adopt a Catch Basin” program from the Jersey City Office of Innovation’s website:

“Catch basins or sewer drains collect storm and rain water from streets and sidewalks, which then travels into the sewer system. Any debris in the street and on the sidewalk can clog and block a catch basin, causing local flooding and potentially polluting our waterways. Our ‘Adopt a Catch Basin’ program empowers local residents and other volunteers to help keep catch basins clean and expand awareness of our sewer system.”

 

Once I made this commitment, I started researching what does go down the drain besides rain water and have discovered some unbelievable facts.

NJ’s sewage systems are old and in serious need of repair. Just read this article about what happened to the Middlesex County Utilities Authority in New Jersey. They were just starting to repair the main pump when Hurricane Sandy hit.

 
…Hurricane Sandy triggered flooding that knocked out the Passaic Valley Utility Authority in Newark—the fifth-largest wastewater treatment facility in the country—for weeks, sending some 840 million gallons of untreated sewage into Newark Bay, according to a 2013 report by the independent research organization Climate Central.

The federal EPA in 2008 estimated the cost of upgrading New Jersey’s CSOs statewide at $9.3 billion.

…Environmentalists warn that the high cost of fixing New Jersey’s ailing sewer systems pales beside the cost of doing nothing. While our ocean waters were deemed swimmable in a July 2013 DEP assessment, 73 percent of the state’s non-ocean waters tested failed due to bacteria indicating the presence of fecal matter. And only 3 percent of 952 watersheds were judged safe to eat, with 38 percent containing dangerous levels of mercury or toxic PCBs…

Please read the entire article here:
https://njmonthly.com/articles/jersey-living/down-the-drain-njs-sewage-system/
 

Just imagine what this means to wildlife. Let’s all do our part in helping the environment be safe for all.

 

12/3/16

How To Get Safer And Cleaner Drinking Water For Your Home

Are you concerned about the safety of your drinking water? The Flint water crisis has brought issues of drinking water quality into sharp focus. We all need water to live – so how can you make sure the water you drink is safe and healthy for your body and the environment?

Earth’s Most Precious Resource

Water is the most precious resource on earth. Around 70% of the earth’s surface is covered in water – that’s the same as the amount of water in our bodies. Without water, there would be no life. From growing crops to drinking to bathing, water is an integral part of our lives.

That’s why threats to water are so serious. Contamination of water supplies can damage human health, and have a negative impact on the earth’s creatures, especially amphibians, such as frogs and toads, and fish, for whom water is a key part of their habitat.

water tap

Water Is Good For You

For the human body, water is a fantastic healer. As experienced water engineer James Boyce of Home Water Filter Guide points out, water isn’t just about quenching your thirst. Water can also:

  • Increase energy levels
  • Improve the condition of skin and hair
  • Help stabilize weight
  • Provide a mood boost
  • Relive fatigue
  • Promote fresh breath
  • Flush out toxins

Experts recommend drinking eight glasses of water a day to stay hydrated and healthy. But what if you’re concerned with the quality of your water?

What’s In Your Water?

Since 1974, the Safe Drinking Water Act has stipulated that all water for public consumption in the USA must be safe to drink. However, even safe water can still contain some pretty nasty things:

  • Heavy metals such as lead
  • Volatile organic compounds such as pesticides
  • Endocrine disrupting chemicals

There are literally hundreds of chemicals that could be in your tap water right now. Although there are regulations as to the quantities that are allowed in tap water, that’s still a lot of chemicals going into your body. Exposure to contaminants in water can lead to a range of health problems from sickness and fatigue to cancer.

Making Water Safe Again

Purer water with less chemicals is a healthy choice for your body. Many people turn to bottled water, but this isn’t really the best option. As well as costing you hundreds of dollars a year, bottled water can be contaminated by compounds from the bottles themselves. Not to mention the environmental impact of throwing away all those plastic bottles afterwards.

If you want to drink safe, it’s best to filter your water. Which method is best? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of some of the most popular methods.

Carbon Filters

Carbon filters are a popular water filter choice. Water passes through activated carbon which acts to filer out all kinds of unwanted compounds. They cost around $40 up front, but work out to be a cost effective option in the long run.

Pros: Removes all kinds of chemicals, heavy metals, fluoride and pesticides. In fact a carbon filter can make most water into safe drinking water including water from ponds, rain or even the sea, so it can certainly make your tap water safe to drink.

Cons: Not as effective against bacteria as other filters. They’re also quite bulky, but if you have plenty of counter space, they are a good option.

Reverse Osmosis

Reverse osmosis filters use a membrane that filters out compounds as water passes through it. Reverse osmosis was originally designed to transform saltwater into freshwater, and is very effective at filtering out chemicals and other things.

Pros: Highly effective at filtering. a good reverse osmosis filter can filter out up to 98% of bacteria, chemicals, and heavy metals, and will also remove fluoride.

Cons: Wastes a lot of water, as for every usable gallon produced, three or more gallons are washed down the drain. It also removes minerals from the water.

Distillation

Distillation makes use of heat to purify water. The water is heated until it becomes team, then cooled until it reverts to a liquid state, minus many contaminants.

Pros: Distillation removes many contaminants, including heavy metals, arsenic and fluoride, resulting in very pure water.

Cons: Doesn’t reduce many chemicals. Home distillation filters are expensive (around $100 for a small one) and can be large and bulky. Like reverse osmosis, it removes minerals.

Under Sink Filters

Under sink filters put water through a multi-stage filtering process which removes many chemicals and contaminants.

Pros: Filters out a wide range of contaminants. Once it’s installed it’s very easy to use with no need to refill or wait for the water to be filtered.

Cons: You may need to hire a plumber to install it under the sink, and you do need the under sink space for the unit as it can’t go anywhere else.

As you can see, there are several options for making your water cleaner and safer to drink. Each has its pros and cons, and each will be more suited to some households than others. Depending on your budget and your needs, you should be able to find the right solution for you so you and your family can enjoy healthier, cleaner water.

___________________________________________________

(Guest Blogger): My name is Toni Stan and I am a blogger and the owner of www.homewaterfilter.guide. I have a passion in all things related to water conservation and I spend most of my time educating people on how to make water clean and safe for consumption.