Poisoned Waters

Thirty-five years after the Clean Water Act, Hedrick Smith’s documentary assesses the state of America’s environmental protections and the impaired health of national waterways through the case study of Puget Sound. With a deep appreciation for the impact of water on our lives, its beauty and majesty, but also its increasing fragility, Smith shares his journey of discovery, showing just how far our environmental protections have fallen short, and exposes the new dangers of emerging contaminants being found in drinking water all across the country. Showing how grassroots citizen action has forced the EPA and big polluters into more effective cleanup operations or how collaborative work among native American tribes, farmers and developers has helped restore vital habitat and endangered species, Smith poses a challenge to the American public and policy- makers to become more forcefully engaged in protecting the vital and cherished American resource of water. Directed by Rick Young. Written by Hedrick Smith and Rick Young; correspondent and Senior Producer Hedrick Smith.

What’s In Your Drinking Water? (15 min. excerpt) from:
POISONED WATERS: CHESAPEAKE BAY (USA, 2009)
Better check and see what the U.S. Geological Survey has discovered in drinking water systems across the U.S. – a whole new generation of chemical contaminants that are causing sex changes in fish and weird mutations in amphibians and are linked by scientists to growing birth defects in children, breast cancer in women and lower sperm counts in men. These contaminants come from such everyday sources as personal care products, discarded pharmaceuticals, home cleaning agents, pesticides, lawn care herbicides, automobile spill and exhaust, and runoff from suburban malls. Directed by Rick Young. Written by Hedrick Smith and Rick Young; correspondent and Senior Producer Hedrick Smith.

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