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Hormone holocaust: California cities begin filling drinking water with millions of pieces of plastic

It’s no secret that California is experiencing a major drought. In an effort to prevent further evaporation and keep the water clean, the sunshine state spent millions of dollars on dumping millions of plastic balls – and in turn, the hormone disrupting chemicals in those plastic balls – into California’s water supply.

The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power bought and deployed 96 million “shade balls” to fill reservoirs with. The hollow spheres are designed to block sunlight and prevent the water from becoming carcinogenic. At 33 cents a ball, California will have spent roughly $34.5 million on the project.

“In the midst of California’s historic drought, it takes bold ingenuity to maximize my goals for water conservation,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti in a statement.(1)

“This effort by LADWP is emblematic of the kind of the creative thinking we need to meet those challenges. Together, we’ve led the charge to cut our city’s water usage by 13 percent, and today we complete an infrastructure investment that saves our ratepayers millions and protects a vital source of drinking water for years to come,” he added.(1)

Short-term solution creates long-term problems

Although California claims that the shade balls will prevent the water supply from becoming carcinogenic, they make zero mention of bromide, along other hormone disrupting chemicals, that are found in heated plastics. The balls are coated with chemicals intended to block sunlight and enable the spheres to last 25 years.(2)

Although the measure is intended to save 300 million gallons of water from evaporating each year, the shade balls contaminate the water with hormone disrupting chemicals, thereby defeating the project’s original goal. What is the point of saving 300 million gallons of water if it shouldn’t be consumed in the first place?

Clearly, the point isn’t to provide clean drinking water to Californians. Rather, it is to provide a cheap, short-term solution to a long-term problem. There is no mention by the mainstream press about what the chemical is that coats these balls. Whatever the chemical may be, the EPA probably deemed it “safe” – a term that has become as diluted as California’s water reservoirs in recent years.

In addition, the shade balls, which are black, are intended to block sunlight to keep the water cool. But if we recall the wisdom cultivated in high school chemistry, the color black absorbs heat more than any other color. Rather than prevent evaporation, these so called “shade balls” accelerate it.

BPA-free plastics still harbor hormone mimicking chemicals

Furthermore, although the FDA has deemed polyethylene as “BPA-free,” it doesn’t necessarily follow that BPA-free plastic is devoid of hormone mimicking chemicals. Multiple studies have confirmed that alternatives to BPA may still harbor noxious estrogen mimickers and endocrine disruptors, especially when used with hot foods and liquids.

In actuality, the bulk of plastic does contain hormone mimickers and endocrine disruptors, most notably when heated. Consequently, no one can be sure California’s shade ball infested water is safe to drink.

According to a study at the University of Texas, published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, hormone-disrupting chemicals are found in almost all plastics, even those that are BPA-free. These chemicals can cause a host of health problems, including cancer. (2)

In addition, a 2003 study conducted by the University of Missouri, published in the same journal, found detectable amounts of BPA in liquids at room temperature. This means that even the plastic water bottle on your desk can potentially harbor these chemicals. The shade balls will be soaked in California’s water supply for 25 years, which practically guarantees these chemicals will infest the reservoirs.(3)

No one knows what the long-term reverberations of this hormone holocaust in California’s water supply will be. What is known, is that shade balls won’t save California’s water supply – they will pollute it.

Sources include:



(3) Randolph, C.W.; James, Genie. From Belly Fat to Belly Flat: How Your Hormones Are Adding Inches to Your Waist and Subtracting Years from Your Life — the Medically Proven Way to Reset Your Metabolism and Reshape Your Body Health Communications, Inc.: Deerfield Beach, Florida. 2008.

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