The good fellows at the yoga college dropped some new and not-so-new knowledge on me last night about Nalgene water bottles: First the bit I'd heard before: Nalgene Water Bottles May Be Hazardous to Your Health
Recent studies have shown that polycarbonate plastics, including the kind used in popular Nalgene water bottles, may leach one of their constituent chemicals into water. The chemical in question, bisphenol-A, has been shown to cause chromosomal disorders and endocrine disruption and to have adverse effects on prostate development and tumors, breast tissue development, and sperm count -- in rodents.
Of course, the truth of the matter is that you're not that likely to actually be harmed by your Nalgene bottle.
But what about those rodents? Aparently, the Nalge Company started out making laboratory equipment. It also seems that some of that laboratory equipment is geared towards torturing fluffy little bunnies. This discovery led to the earnest kids at the University of Colorado to organize a boycott. Nalge Nunc International's reply boils down to "Yeah, so?":
There is nothing short of controlled animal research that can prove the safety and efficacy of a drug or surgical procedure. Without animal research, there would be no polio vaccine, no heart by-pass surgery, no chemotherapy and no insulin. Without animal research, we will never be able to cure AIDS, multiple sclerosis or Alzheimer's.
And actually, I agree -- Science isn't always pretty. As long as the human race isn't willing to just sit back and take what comes at us, we're going to do a lot of ugly things to advance the race.
But that doesn't mean I'm going to buy another Nalgene bottle, either. I suppose I might just try a SIGG. At least they are recyclable and... stuff.