Science With Hannah: Clear is Not Clean

Hannah Narvaez ~ Staff Blogger

Hopefully, everyone is aware of pollution and its existence in the United States. As a planet, we are facing consequences from human-caused pollution, but it extends much further than the trash on the side of the road or floating in the ocean.

The pollution I’m writing about is the invisible kind – the type that gets noticed when it’s too late and you become ill. Water pollution has been linked to several human health issues, and the risk of being affected is increasing. While we are privileged to have running water to bathe in, to cook with, to water our plants and drink, should we really trust in its appearance?

The fact is that tap water is extremely risky to drink. While it may look clear, bring refreshment and be tasteless, it is actually a clear concoction with secret surprises. Yes, our water is filtered and goes through water-treatment facilities, but chlorine is actually used as a disinfectant.

While it isn’t too terribly harmful at low levels, there is a high chance for chlorine and other disinfectants to produce byproducts that are harmful to humans in any amounts. According to PopScience, many of these byproducts have been tested and found to be linked to miscarriages.

Our tap water also has the potential to contain insecticides and herbicides from pipes underground in areas where they are used in excess. These chemicals easily wash into rivers and lakes and seep into the groundwater as well.

The pesticide Atrazine has been linked to hormonal imbalances, and other pesticides have demonstrated signs of violent illness in lab animals after just a few days of exposure.

Arsenic is another dangerous natural poison that is linked to the increase of certain cancer types and can also easily be found in tap water. The chemical occurs naturally in rocks and soil, making water contamination almost impossible to prevent.

The severity of its effects on human health has private well owners periodically checking for contamination, along with an arsenic-specific removing test at water-treatment plants. There is also a strong urgency to inspect for lead poisoning in tap water.

Corroded metal pipelines are the cause of lead contamination, and with most pipes being underground, how often are they really checked or changed?

The lead neurotoxin found in drinking water was recently a major problem in Flint, Michigan. Further testing found that ingestion can lead to the development of permanent learning disabilities, especially in children.

The last potential ingredient in your tap water, that I am mentioning, is pharma (aka other people’s medication that makes its way into our water supply).

Some pharmaceutical products are easily removed in the water treatment process because they mainly contaminate surface water, but some medications and birth control make their way into the systems through human waste and then into rivers and lakes that contribute to our water supply.

I share this information not to scare you, but to warn you. I’m not saying that tap water contains all these things and that it should not be trusted; you should just be aware of the risks that potentially exist in your clear glass of water.

 

LC in History: Influenza Development

Dr. Clifton W. Potter Jr. ~ LC History Professor

Last week, my wife and I did something we have never done, we cancelled all of our classes—except two on Monday—because we had the flu. Luckily we had received the vaccine last October, so we had the milder strain that is making the rounds. That was bad enough.

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Hornets Hit Home Hard

Jasmine Brogdon ~ Staff Writer

On Saturday Feb.18, the Lynchburg College Baseball team completed a double-header. They were victorious in both games. Penn State Harrisburg was their opponent.

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Everybody Knows Your Name

Dr Mike Robinson ~ LC Communication Studies Professor

The proof that we are in a new golden age of superhero television is best demonstrated by the weekly block of programming on the CW.

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LC in History: Influenza Development

Dr Clifton W. Porter ~ LC History Professor

Last week, my wife and I did something we have never done, we cancelled all of our classes—except two on Monday—because we had the flu. Luckily we had received the vaccine last October, so we had the milder strain that is making the rounds. That was bad enough.

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Science With Hannah: Clear is Not Clean

Hannah Narvaez ~ Staff Blogger

Hopefully, everyone is aware of pollution and its existence in the United States. As a planet, we are facing consequences from human-caused pollution, but it extends much further than the trash on the side of the road or floating in the ocean.

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She Said: Love Bites

Sarah Irby ~ Assistant Editor

If you grew up in a household like mine, then your mom probably told you that if you ever came home with a hickey you’d be grounded because, you know, they’re gross. Whatever, Mom. We’ll just have to agree to disagree.

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LC in History: Golden Age

Dr Clifton W. Potter ~ LC History Professor

When Dr. Josephus Hopwood left Virginia Christian College in 1910, his place was taken by Dr. S.T. Willis who resigned in 1912. The third president of the college, Dr. G.O. Davis had served as vice president and financial agent before he assumed the chief leadership position in an administration haunted by the less-than-orthodox monetary policies of Hopwood. He resigned in June 1915.

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Political Power Play

Michael Wertz ~ Staff Writer

With Election 2016 Over, Virginia 2017 Heats Up

As citizens across the country settle back into their normal daily routines—which are once again free of political campaign ads—those seeking elected office in Virginia are preparing for the quick turnaround of the 2017 statewide elections.

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Furthering Club Sports

Katherine Graves ~ Copy Desk Chief

Lynchburg College has a new director of club sports, Ben Smith, who hopes to strengthen the leadership skills of LC students, bring new club sports to LC and keep LC’s current club sports going strong.

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LU Officer Faces Charges

Sara Severens ~ Staff Writer

A Liberty University police officer was arrested on three felony counts of aggravated sexual battery in a case involving two minors.

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Astronaut Art

Jasmine Brogden ~ Staff Writer

“The Academy Center of the Arts are highly honored to reintroduce the Lynchburg community to Leland Melvin, astronaut and former NFL player,” said Director of Visual Arts Ted Batt.

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