Health experts urge the community to protect drinking water

News

LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Our state is still recovering from the Flint Water Crisis and many people who live in the city may never trust the drinking water again.

But having safe and clean drinking water isn’t just a public health necessity; it’s also an economic one. This year’s National Drinking Water Week is dedicated to drawing attention to just that.

“It’s important for folks to understand not only how important their water source is, but what they can do to protect that source,” said Bonnifer Ballard, the Executive Director for the Michigan Section of the American Water Works Association.

Disposing of trash properly and not pouring oil down the drain are just two of the ways to keep drinking water safe, according to the American Water Works Association.

Ballard says the water in our state is not up to par in large part because the pipes need to be replaced, which is something that’s long overdue.

“A lot of the pipes that are in the ground right now were laid 50, 75, 100 years ago. So those pipes are at their natural end of their usefulness and need to be replaced,” said Ballard.

It’s a problem that Flint residents still experience firsthand. Just last month, Michigan stopped giving free bottled water to city residents.

It’s a move that has Flint Mayor Karen Weaver threatening to file a lawsuit against the state.

“If we have to take the state to court that’s what we’re going to do and we’ll sue them,” said Weaver.

But Ballard says it’s important for everyone in the state to come together and find a solution so a situation like the Flint Water Crisis will get resolved and never happen again.

“This is about all of us working together to figure out how to continue to maintain and invest in a really strong water infrastructure to ensure that every community in Michigan has clean, safe drinking water,” said Ballard.

Ballard says it’s just a few simple steps to ensure everyone has clean water.

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