Plastics and plastic water bottles and the damaged they do!
engineering, produce data-based credible reports of the worldwide problems with plastics and specifically plastic water Experts ranging from hydro-climatology to environmental health and bottles and the pollution they bring our waters (rivers, lakes, ocean, etc.) overall.
Sales and consumption of bottled water had been skyrocketing in recent years. From 1988 to 2002, the bottled water globally more than quadrupled. Bottled water sales increased annually faster than any other category of commercial beverage. As of 2013, more than 50% of Americans drank bottled water– an astounding fact given the high quality and low cost of most of U.S. tap water.
The good news is that is all changing somewhat these days, thanks to responsible consumers. Still, most consumers don’t have all facts. We need more education for us (and the world) to change, and that’s going to take a generation to make tangible change. We need to start teaching children in a way that they understand viscerally that plastics are the existential threat to the earth.
For more information please contact:
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion Division of Population Health School Health Branch 1600 Clifton Road NE Atlanta, GA 30333 1-800-CDC-INFO (232-4636) TTY: 1-888-232-6348 www.cdc.gov/bam
Why provide access to drinking water in schools? Drinking water can contribute to good health, and schools are in a unique position to promote healthy, dietary behaviors, including drinking water. More than 95% of children and adolescents are enrolled in schools, and students typically spend at least 6 hours at school each day.1 Ensuring that students have access to safe, free drinking water throughout the school environment gives them a healthy alternative to sugar-sweetened beverages before, during, and after school.
Access to safe, free drinking water helps to increase students’ overall water consumption, maintain hydration, and reduce energy intake, if substituted for sugar-sweetened beverages.2-4 In addition, adequate hydration may improve cognitive function among children and adolescents, which is important for learning.5-9 Drinking water, if fluoridated, also plays a role in preventing dental caries (cavities).10
Are schools required to provide access to drinking water? The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) requires that schools participating in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) make plain (i.e., no flavoring, additives, or carbonation) drinking water available to students at no cost during the lunch meal periods at the locations where meals are served.11 Schools must also make drinking water available during the School Breakfast Program (SBP), when breakfast is served in the cafeteria.
Food served during the afterschool snack service falls under the National School Lunch Program. Therefore, potable water is required to be available during the after school snack meal service. Water is not considered part of the reimbursable meal, and there is no separate funding for providing drinking water.
Funds from the nonprofit food service account may be used to pay for some costs of providing the water, including cups and pitchers. The USDA has issued guidance on this requirement, including information on determining allowable costs.12,13 Schools can consult their state education or agriculture agencies with additional questions about meeting these requirements. States, school districts, and individual schools may have additional policies and regulations requiring drinking water in schools Are there recommendations for schools on providing drinking water to students?
In addition to federal requirements for providing students with access to drinking water, there are other recommendations related to water access in schools.The Institute of Medicine and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that plain drinking water be available throughout the school day at no cost to students, and if other beverages are available or sold during the school day, they should only include plain water (i.e., no flavoring, additives, or carbonation), fat-free or low-fat milk, and 100% fruit juice in specified portions.14,15 Similar recommendations are promoted in several voluntary school recognition programs, including the Alliance for a Healthier Generation’s Healthy Schools Program and USDA’s Healthier US School Challenge (HUSSC).16,17
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) also recommends the following: (a) Children and adolescents should be taught to drink water routinely as an initial beverage of choice as long as daily dietary caloric and other nutrient (e.g., calcium, vitamins) needs are being met; (b) Water is also generally the appropriate first choice for hydration before, during, and after most exercise regimens, and (c) Children should have free access to water, particularly during school hours.