Using a plastic bottle to clean water is an interesting idea. The better idea, if possible, is using water distillers.
This new and innovative way to clean water for those living in desperate conditions around the globe is to let the sun’s UV rays purify the water. Sounds simple, right? It is simple; deceptively so, and may work well in third world countries or in disaster scenarios. Right now just about 3.4 million people die annually from water borne diseases and contaminated water kills roughly 4,000 kids every day. If they had access to water distillers, their problem would be handled, however, they may not, and reality is, without clean water, people will die.
The Water School is making sure their simple, yet effective idea, gets out to everyone who needs it. While there were other methods being used, the creators of the School wanted something that anyone could do, no matter where they lived in the world or whether they had a job. In other words, the solution to providing clean water in disaster torn areas and other locations needed to be sustainable by the people themselves.
Their solution? Ten million plastic bottles are made in the world, just about daily. They dot the landscape in every country and are considered to be a major nuisance. How many people knew that if you put water in them and let them sit in the sun for six hours, that the UV rays from the sun destroys bacteria?
Of course, there is another question here, and that deals with whether or not bisphenol-A (BPA) leeches from the plastic into the water. Current research on this issue shows concerns about freezing a plastic bottle and then having it heat up, but there is nothing that addresses leaving bottles out in the direct sunlight. However, if you have just been through something like Japan or Haiti, you would likely not be too worried about it.
While this method is not exactly new, as the World Health Organization has used it to treat water, it was just never taken out into the field and applied in a real life situation. The School founders took their idea to Africa and it worked like a charm. The School has since gone into Uganda and Kenya with their mission and has had great success.
Imagine the applications for this process if you were stuck in a town without useable water and no water distillers around as a backup? Granted, the best location to be doing this kind of thing is within 35 degrees of the equator, due to the higher levels of UV rays and sun penetration. However, this does not rule out it being used in a pinch in other locations with perhaps an adjustment in the amount of time the bottles are left out.
The bottom line is, if you want to have clean, fresh and safe water, year around, and not have to depend on the water filtration plant during a flood, have a water distiller on hand. You’ll be glad you got one.