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Is bottled water safer than your tap water?

James Salzman, a professor of environmental policy at the UCLA School of Law, was giving a class lecture when he got the idea to write his book, Drinking Water: A History. It came to him as he made the point that more people have access to safe drinking water now than ever before in history. As he shared this idea with his students, he noticed that many of them had single-use, plastic bottles of water on their desks. He asked himself, if safe drinking water is so prevalent, why do so many people drink bottled water?

In the course of researching his book, he uncovered three main reasons: convenience, fashion, and safety. (In this interview about his book, Salzman doesn’t seem to be a fan of plastic bottled water either.) Let’s take a look at each reason and uncover the truth behind it.



People think bottled water is more convenient. Yes, you can pick it up and take it anywhere, but at what cost? Single-use plastic water bottles are a major contributor to plastic pollution around the world, especially in oceans.



Bottled water as we know it came into vogue in the 1990s, and it’s been growing in popularity since. However, it’s possible that we may have reached peak bottled water. As more people become aware of the hazards of bottled water, they are turning back to the tap. Several campaigns, like this one at Drake University, have banned single-use bottled water from college campuses and other areas.



Returning to Salzman’s interview, he says that in the United States, there’s no reason to assume bottled water is safer than tap water. He explains that bottled water is regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), falling under the category of a food stuff. Tap water, on the other hand, is regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The testing by the EPA is much more rigorous than the FDA. Salzman concludes, “Just because it comes in a bottle doesn’t mean it’s necessarily cleaner.” Plus there’s the issue of microplastics.

The Coway Aquamega 100 purification system filters water right at the tap, providing fresh, clean drinking water to your home every day. It reduces the common contaminants found in drinking water by 99.9%. It does all this without creating any plastic waste—and it looks stylish as well.


1Coway air purifiers have been proven to trap dust, pollen, dander, viruses and bacteria in the air based on KCL (Korea Conformity Laboratories) testing.They have been tested in a 30㎥ size chamber according to the Korea Air Cleaning Association standard (SPS-KACA 002-132:2022 Modified) to measure the 0.01㎛ size of particle removal rate. It was tested on maximum airflow speed in normal room temperature and humidity conditions. The performance may vary in the actual living environment of customers.
→ Tested with Airmega Aim, 100, 150, 160, AP-1216L, AP-1512HH, AP-1512HHS, 200M, Icon, IconS, 230, 240, 250, 250 Art, 250S, 300, 300S, 400, 400S, ProX

299.97% of viruses, bacteria, fungi and pollen were verified to be removed from the air for Coway air purifiers which have Green True HEPA™ filter applied based on the Japan Food Research Laboratories(JFRL) testing according to JEM 1467 standard.
→ Tested with Coway Airmega AP-1512HH, AP-1512HHS, 250, 250 Art, 250S, 300, 300S, 400, 400S
→ All tested by JFRL and received above result within below time.

All tested by JFRL and received above result within below time.

- Virus: Tested with Escherichia coli phage ΦX174 NBRC 103405, 60 minutes
- Bacteria: Tested with Staphylococcus epidermidis NBRC 12993, 60 minutes
- Fungi/Mold: Tested with Penicillium citrinum NBRC 6352, 60 minutes
- Pollen: Tested with Cedar Pollen extract, 60 minutes

3Aerosol test conducted in a Biosafety level 3 laboratory with two Coway air purifier models, Coway Airmega 250 and 400 for removal of SARS-CoV-2 Aerosol by US based MRI Global, a not-for-profit laboratory and partner of US Department of Defense. The test was conducted in a 13.1ft3 chamber. Virus was aerosolized for 15 minutes and the product was turned on high for 2 minutes. Result showed each product effectively removed over 99.98% of the SARS-CoV-2 in 2 minutes. This is a result from a laboratory experiment condition and result may vary in different conditions. This result does not imply it kills SARS-CoV-2 or prevents the transmission of Covid-19. Coway Airmega 250S and 400S are identical to the tested models and has equal performance with an additional mobile connectivity function.

4The concentration of ammonia, acetaldehyde and acetic acid were proven to be removed within 30 minutes by FCG Research Institute, Inc. Human Life Science Lab. It is not a demonstration result in the actual use space. Not all odors and gases may be supported. → Tested with Coway Airmega 150, 160, AP-1512HH, AP-1512HHS, 400, 400S

5The coverage area of the air purifier is based on an area where the air cleaner can make two air changes per hour (ACPH). An air change per hour translates to how many times an air purifier can clean an area, assuming the height of a ceiling to be 8 ft, in one hour. Therefore ** means two air changes per hour means that the cleaner can clean the area once every 30 minutes and * means air changes per hour means that the air purifier can clean the area once every 60 minutes.

10Terms and conditions apply. Discounts, including promotions, coupons, bundle discount and subscription discount, cannot be stacked on top of other coupons. During promotional periods, discount codes will not be able to be applied to orders. Promo codes may apply to products only—filters, accessories, and new products within 3 months of the release date are not included.