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Would You Drink Water Made From Sewage?


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 Biology   |   Chemistry   |   Health   |   Environmental   |   Science
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Credits (and Twitter handles):
Script Writer: David Goldenberg (@dgoldenberg)
Script Editor: Emily Elert (@eelert)
Video Illustrator: Omkar Bhagat (@TheCuriousEnggr)
Video Director: Emily Elert (@eelert)
Video Narrator: Henry Reich (@MinutePhysics)
With Contributions From: Alex Reich, Kate Yoshida, Ever Salazar, Peter Reich and Rachel Becker
Music by: Nathaniel Schroeder:


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If you liked this week’s video, we think you might also like these things:
Disgust Sensitivity Quiz:

FYI: We try to leave jargon out of our videos, but if you want to learn more about this topic, here are some handy keywords to get your googling started:
- Disgust: A feeling of revulsion at something unpleasant
- Emotion: A mental state that arises spontaneously.
- Pathogen: A tiny living organism that can cause disease.
- Reverse Osmosis: A way to purify water by pushing it through a semipermeable membrane.
- Toilet-to-tap: A framing device used by recycled water opponents to cause people to think of sewage.
- NEWater: The brand name given to recycled water in Singapore.

Image Credits:

Chocolate brownie - Wikimedia User m

Soup Cream - pixabay user wowwandee (Public Domain)

Bed pan - Wikimedia user Michaelwalk (Public Domain)

Glass of Juice - Stiftelsen Elektronikkbransjen

Cockroach - Gary Alpert



Rozin, P., Haddad, B., Nemeroff, C., Solvic, P. (2015). Psychological aspects of the rejection of recycled water: Contamination, purification and disgust. Judgement and Decision Making, 10-1(50-63). Retrieved from

Schwartz, J. (2015). Water Flowing From Toilet to Tap May Be Hard to Swallow. New York Times, D1. Retrieved from:

Haddad, B. (2012). The Psychology of Water Reclamation and Reuse: Survey Findings and Research Roadmap. U.S. Case Studies, D22-D23. Retrieved from

Nemeroff, C. (2016). Personal Communication.

Gallagher, D.. (2016). Personal Communication.

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