Gov. Boscia: Water in water, not bottled water


Brad Schimel, a Republican, has ordered state water agencies to reduce or eliminate the amount of bottled water and bottled water-infused beverages in the public water supply, a measure he announced Thursday.

The measure applies to all public water systems, including cities, counties and towns.

Schimel’s order includes a deadline of Oct. 31 to implement the new restrictions.

The governor said the measure was meant to protect people from the risks of drinking untreated tap water that contains contaminants like arsenic and lead.

State officials estimate that the bottled water is responsible for more than 1,000 illnesses in New Jersey each year.

More than 4,000 people in New York have died from drinking untreated bottled water since 2011, according to the governor’s office.

State health officials have found that the amount consumed by people drinking bottled water increases as they age and as their bodies produce more toxic substances in their urine and stool, according in a 2015 study.

A study by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection found that in a sample of 3,000 residents in the state, 1 in 6 drank tap water containing lead, arsenic and other toxic contaminants.

The drinking water was contaminated by fecal matter and lead-contaminated water.

In 2014, the state Department of Health and Environmental Control found that New Jersey’s bottled water industry was responsible for about 60 deaths from drinking contaminated water.