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Conspiracy: Bottled Water Not Regulated

“It’s not always obvious, it’s not always clear, but water is regulated.” Find out how!

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Noah La Vie | DES MOINES, IA

Bottled water chokes the oceans, releases chemicals called phthalates, which are known to disrupt testosterone and other hormones, and can drastically affect the principalities from where the water is drawn.

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) declared in 1999 that “no one should assume that just because he or she purchases water in a bottle that it is necessarily any better regulated, purer, or safer than most tap water.”

Things haven’t improved since 1999 as the NRDC article has been updated in 2016 and contained exactly the same text as before; only adding a section on plastic pollution in water.

All this has led to an understanding from certain groups that bottled water is not regulated and to a certain extent, at least federally, it isn’t. The EPA regulates tap water, groundwater extraction by municipals, and water used for any other purpose but to be sold commercially by companies in plastic bottles. The Environmental Protection Agency’s role in regulating the industry is minimal to the point of obscurity. The Food and Drug Administration has done some work but recent evaluations of the industry’s regulation revealed that 70% to 85% of the bottled water industry was going unregulated by the FDA.

“While federal environmental laws may incidentally apply to some bottled water operations, water withdrawals and use are generally the domain of state law. State law governs groundwater withdrawals with a mix of common law rules and more modern regulatory schemes.”

 -Noah Hall 

(Testimony Before the United State House of Representatives
Oversight and Government Reform Committee(

The regulation of bottled water at the federal level is little to non-existent due to successful lobbying and slick marketing by the industry. This all may point to the summation that the industry is unregulated. Conspiracy theorists have seized these symptoms and surface facts and ran with them failing to do crucial deeper research. This has led to marginal beliefs such as that bottled water contributes to a closed third eye, brainwashes us, poisons us, or at its worst: makes us superhuman.

Doing further research would reveal that it is not the federal government who regulates these companies, it is the states. Take a glowing example, Crystal Clear in Iowa. Ordinarily, they would have to follow some basic and lax guidelines from the FDA which is where the conspiracy theories start. Where they end is with SSB 1145 which regulates further what exactly is in bottled water and what encases it. Crystal Clear, therefore, has to make its water as good as or better than tap water and has become successful by regularly doing so.

“Establishing… rules relating to standards for testing for the presence of chemicals in water sold in sealed containers for human consumption. The standards for testing shall not be less stringent than the rules established for public drinking water supplies pursuant to chapter 455B.”

– Iowa Senate Study Bill 1145 (Enacted)

This one paragraph in effect regulates all bottled water in the state of Iowa to be at the very minimum the quality of tap water regulations set by the state. All over the United States, such paragraphs exist: Wyoming, Virginia, Maryland, Arizona, California; these states and more all have similar legalese in their own such legislation.

Bottled Water, like it or not, drink it or not, is regulated by the Government. Perhaps it is not regulated largely by Washington, but regulated it is by the State Governments that are so often overlooked in the application of conspiracy theories. This same solution can be found in most Federal Government Regulation Myths.

It’s not always obvious, it’s not always clear, but water is regulated. The myth of deregulation of bottled water is busted.


71 Republic LLC and Noah La Vie are in no way associated with Crystal Clear Water Co. who were unavailable for comment. Other brands are available.

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