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Lake Jackson, Texas, a city in the greater Houston area, is “purg[ing] its water system for 60 days” after a brain-eating amoeba killed a 6-year old boy, NBC News reported. The city is currently under a boil-water notice, and officials have announced that it could take as long as 3 months to make the water safe. The amoeba moves quickly once it strikes – and the symptoms are much like the flu, with fever and vomiting, but then it moves on to symptoms like neck stiffness and hallucinations. People do not become infected from drinking contaminated water, but rather through ingesting it nasally, and symptoms start 1-9 days (median 5 days) after swimming or other nasal exposure.
This amoeba is not the only water risk that is found in the United States. In Flint, Michigan, due to “blatant environmental injustice” and racism, lead leaked into the city’s water supply and exposed between 6,000 and 12,000 children to a neurotoxin beginning in 2014. As we reported last year, “Low-income communities like Flint lack the political capital of wealthier communities and thus are routinely neglected and forgotten by lawmakers.” What happened in Flint and what happened in Lake Jackson obviously stem from different underlying contamination. Nevertheless, everyone deserves access to safe and clean water, and we need to ensure that happens across the country from Lake Jackson to Flint.
By Elizabeth Love, ODP Contributing Writer Authorities in the Canadian Arctic territory Nunavut, announced a state of emergency this week due to a possible contamination event affecting the City of Iqaluit’s water supply. Tests were performed after residents reported the smell of gasoline coming from their tap water, but they came back clean. However, […]
By Ashira Morris, ODP Staff Writer For 40 million people living in the Western US, the Colorado River basin is their source of water supply and last month, the federal government declared a water shortage on the river for the first time. Within the basin, Thirty Native tribes have recognized rights to more than one-fifth […]
By Ashira Morris, ODP Staff Writer As water shortages continue to grow in the West, with the Colorado River drying up and the country’s two largest reservoirs at record lows, desalination — the process of taking salt out of salt water — could make ocean water drinkable. And it’s increasingly becoming part of the water […]
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