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What if your tap water isn't safe?

is your tap water safe?We all know about the environmental impact of bottled water.  Most people know about how tap water is less regulated than bottled water.   But what happens if your tap water isn't safe?

In the U.S., 89.3% of tap water was considered safe in 2007, which actually went down from 92% in 2006.  Those still seem like pretty good numbers, but that still leaves 29 million people who don't have safe tap water to drink.

First off, how do you know if your tap water is unsafe?  Look it up!  The EPA has information on the safety of your drinking water and you can look it up by state.

What if you see on the EPA's website that your drinking water is perfectly safe to consume, but you still think it tastes kind of funny?  The EPA says that funny tastes and smells in your tap water are "aesthetic" and is still safe to drink.  A simple filter can usually remove those odd tastes and smells.

If you're in the 10.7% whose water is unsafe to drink, don't go back to the bottled water just yet!  There are filters available.   However, a Brita-type filter probably won't suffice.  An under-the-sink style filter can remove more contaminants.  The National Resources Defense Council has a thorough consumer guide to water filters to help you make the right choice.