Water Contamination in Flint Michigan
January 25, 2016
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The city of Flint, Michigan has been in the news headlines for two weeks straight. Clean and usable water is a necessity in our daily live; but imagine if the water you use every day to shower, cook, and brush your teeth was contaminated with lead; putting both you and your family at risk. Well that is exactly what is occurring in Flint, Michigan.
While the water pipeline to Lake Huron was being finished in 2014, the city decided to draw water from the Flint River to save money. The Department of Environmental failed to add the necessary chemicals to the lake that would offset its corrosive nature causing lead to leak through the pipes and into the city’s water supply.
Although the water contamination began back in April of 2014, the state’s governor Rick Synder did not announce a state of emergency until earlier this month on January 5, 2016. This caused President Obama to file a federal state of emergency on January 15, 2016. The National Guard was summoned in and has helped the city distribute bottled water and filters for residents of Flint. In October of 2015 the city switched its water supply back to Detroit’s supply. However, those who have encountered the water and its contamination are still at high risk for problems later on down the line, especially children.
Flint’s water supply has been contaminated with lead. Doctors and scientist say that there is no safe level of lead that can be in the body. The impact of lead on the body is one of the most dangerous and can cause both brain as well as nervous system development issues. Lead poisoning in children under the age of 6 is especially dangerous because the damage caused by it is irreversible. Not only does lead poisoning cause brain and nervous system damage, it also harms other parts of the body such as the bones, blood, and kidneys. For residents of Flint this is very alarming.
Not only is Flint in a dire need of a new water supply, health care needs to be provided for those impacted by the dangerous effects of lead poisoning. In response to the water crisis notable celebrities and people across the country have done their part in helping the city. Combined musicians such as Big Sean and rock band Pearl Jam have donated over $300,000 to the city of Flint. Others have simply donated bottles of water such as singer Cher who has donated 180,000 bottles of water.
You can do your part in helping those in Flint by donating at www.unitedwaygenesee.org, and going to the Flint Water Fund, the amount of your donation does not matter. You can give goes a long way for those in need.