Monday, June 21, 2010

21 JUN 10: H-2.0

It's the first day of summer in the Northern Hemisphere. And just in time for the hottest season, Columbus Water Works is introducing a change in its main product. It's about time Columbus joined the big-name private competition -- and brought out 2010-model new and improved water.

Columbus Water Works officials say beginning today, a little phosphate gradually will be added to the water supply for the next year-and-a-half. It's not supposed to be a large amount, of course -- like slowly adding alcohol to the lemonade jar until you pass out in the backyard.

A Columbus Water Works news release says the purpose of added phosphate is "corrosion control." Remembering what happened last year along River Road, this sounds like a new twist on those TV commercials -- they want you to know the water TANKS are safe.

Columbus Water Works officials told WTVM the other day phosphate already is added to the water supply in Harris County and Phenix City. If their doctors' offices don't have lines stretching out the door, it must be OK.

As Columbus Water Works adds phosphate to the water, some of the chlorine will be removed. That may not have an impact on the water you drink. But the people who make Clorox probably will send the main office a thank-you card today.

If you've read the latest Water Quality Report from Columbus Water Works, you know there isn't much chlorine in the drinking water - less than two parts per million last year. Of course, the number of people who actually have read the Water Quality Report probably could fit in a small meeting room at the Trade Center....

But anyway: the report says chlorine is added by Columbus Water Works "to control microbes." So we may be trading microbe control for corrosion control - but at least the bacteria inside your body will be less likely to rust.

Columbus Water Works officials insist the quality and taste of your drinking water will NOT change because of added phosphate. If you notice a difference, you have two options. Either call the Water Works to complain - or add a little chocolate syrup, like you'd do with sour milk.

I don't know if any Columbus residents raised a fuss years ago, about adding fluoride to the drinking water. It's still an issue in some U.S. cities, where fluoridation was on the ballot only last month. Why Fox News Channel didn't declare the no votes a defeat for President Obama's socialist agenda, I have no idea....

So far, I haven't heard any objections to the Columbus Water Works plan to add phosphate. But one national group warns online there could be a risk to pet fish, as phosphates increase the amount of algae in aquariums. On the other hand, Alge Crumpler was a good receiver for the Atlanta Falcons years ago.

(Maybe this is why Paul Olson missed a Columbus mayoral forum over the weekend. He's planning a dramatic news conference outside the Columbus Water Works office, to declare this an insidious city government plot to ruin his flower shop business.)

Here's hoping Columbus Water Works is careful in adding that phosphate. Remember last year, when the Chattahoochee River turned brown due to high amounts of manganese? [26 Mar 09] We don't need any more excesses in our water - especially at a time of year when we're tempted to drink water to excess, anyway.

Let's see what else we can analyze, as spring turns to summer....

+ The Ledger-Enquirer reported attorney Stacey Jackson is representing three other Parks Department employees, besides Director Tony Adams. I didn't know some lawyers operated on a "group discount" plan.

+ Columbus Police reported the attendance at "Family Day in the Park" dropped sharply this year, to around 6,000. If that trend continues, Shooters on Milgen Road actually might risk being open next June.

+ An Albany eye doctor told the public radio program "Marketplace" he plans to move to Arkansas, to reduce his costs. He says he's concerned about federal government threats to reduce Medicare payments. Are we sure it isn't due to all the patients with peanut dust in their eyes?

+ Our new Miss Georgia talked with WTVM about winning the title. Christina McCauley revealed after she was crowned Saturday night, she was in meetings with the pageant board until nearly 4:00 a.m. After last year, they REALLY wanted to make sure McCauley wanted to keep the crown.

BURKARD'S BEST BETS: Gas for $2.46 a gallon at Liberty on 14th Street in Phenix City.... Chips Ahoy cookies two-for-one at Publix.... but 99 cents for ONE taco at Taco Bell? Que mal....

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