Why Are 96,000,000 Black Balls on This Reservoir?

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I took a boat through 96 million black plastic balls on the Los Angeles reservoir to find out why they're there. The first time I heard about shade balls the claim was they reduce evaporation. But it turns out this isn't the reason they were introduced.
Huge thanks to LADWP for arranging this special tour for me. Next time let's put the GoPro on the submersible!
The balls are made of high density polyethylene (HDPE) which is less dense than water so they float on the surface of the reservoir even if they break apart. They are 10cm (4 inches) in diameter and contain about 210ml of water. So the main reason they are on the reservoir is to block sunlight from entering the water and triggering a chemical reaction that turns harmless bromide into carcinogenic bromate. This effect occurs with prolonged exposure to bromate so regulators insist that levels be kept below 10 microgram per liter on average over a 12 month period.
Special thanks to Patreon supporters:
Donal Botkin, Michael Krugman, Ron Neal, Stan Presolski, Terrance Shepherd, Penward Rhyme and everyone who provided feedback on an early draft of this video.
Thanks to:
Las Virgenes Reservoir for footage of initial shade ball dump
Euro-Matic for bird into jet-engine footage
Researched and Produced by Casey Rentz
Animations by Maria Raykova
Music from "Colorful Animation 4" "Seaweed"
And from Kevin MacLeod "Marty Gots a Plan"
This is an educational video about the science of water quality.



10 mai 2019




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Commentaires 59 682
Aditesh Raj
Aditesh Raj Il y a 6 heures
they need a different kind of boat
Paul Mitford
Paul Mitford Il y a 6 heures
Never trust a bald man who claims eating plastic is not harmful to your health.
Dawelo Sears
Dawelo Sears Il y a 6 heures
Why are there 96,000,000 black balls in this water? Me: immediately scroll the comments to let one of my fellow FRvidrs let me know!! 💪
larry gabrynowicz
larry gabrynowicz Il y a 7 heures
the girl looks like mallory from studio c
MISTA 808 Il y a 7 heures
I've seen this video at least 6 times but FRvid thinks I still need to watch it. Funny how pointless videos like this can get 40 million views but the REAL content we're all seeking will be less than 50k views.
Willie Morris IV
Willie Morris IV Il y a 7 heures
Okay FINE, FRvid. I’ll watch the video.
Skips Il y a 8 heures
Kara Marie
Kara Marie Il y a 8 heures
Food-grade plastic? Really, people???
Jorge Miguel
Jorge Miguel Il y a 9 heures
I would like to ride a hovercraft over that.
The Chromosome Kid
The Chromosome Kid Il y a 9 heures
Why are there 96,000,000 black balls in ur mom
Michael Walker
Michael Walker Il y a 11 heures
They're missing the black men they were attached to.
TheBSideDJ Il y a 12 heures
why would they desinfection a whole reservoir with chlorine ?? Why not only disinfect the water needed (lower quantity) in a different way.... UV sterilisation f.e. ? Too much costs maybe.. And why using chlorine (or chloramine ?) when that even forms more bromate than ozone ? Still a lot of questions with the limited details given in this upload...
monstersince Il y a 12 heures
since when was putting plastic in an aquatic enviroment a good thing
David KinderTeacher
David KinderTeacher Il y a 12 heures
thanks for the COOL information that I can TEACH the students 😎 Especially it looks like a pool of BOBA 😘 ...where Taiwan FIRST manufactured and popularized to the WHOLE WORLD 😍 Blessings from Taiwan ! 🥰😇 P.S. Thank you for the Mandarin Chinese subtitle 🤗
Dave Stock
Dave Stock Il y a 13 heures
Cause you had 48,000 black dudes volunteer their gonads?
덥다 Il y a 13 heures
Its made out of plastic. Whats about microplastic, which will get into the water?... What a dumb idea.
Dave Stock
Dave Stock Il y a 12 heures
덥다 That’s only cause they want to ban grocery bags, and make it a pain in the ass to shop.
Kevin B
Kevin B Il y a 13 heures
There should have built solar panels on top instead.
Linda Miscandlon
Linda Miscandlon Il y a 13 heures
Those guys seriously have balls 🤷‍♀️
Frost Il y a 14 heures
0:53 me when i go to africa for the first time.
PJR7 Il y a 14 heures
Anyone else get the feeling that girl wanted him to ask her for out for a cup of coffee (at the end) 🤷‍♂️ haha
Dave Stock
Dave Stock Il y a 12 heures
Beach Metal Detecting Great Britain
Did you count them?
Steven Hellmann
Steven Hellmann Il y a 16 heures
Wouldn't an airboat be a much better idea?
:::::::::::::::::::::::: Il y a 16 heures
Today I saw a bird fly into a plane engine in slow motion
Dave Stock
Dave Stock Il y a 11 heures
:::::::::::::::::::::::: Yes, yes it is. Ironical in its fullest extent. Today I answered a nerds comment in slow motion.
:::::::::::::::::::::::: Il y a 12 heures
It's ironic, telling someone to get a life in a youtube video comments section
Dave Stock
Dave Stock Il y a 12 heures
:::::::::::::::::::::::: Bet that’s the most exciting thing you’ve ever seen. Get a life.
Robert Malone
Robert Malone Il y a 16 heures
Las Angeles sucks. Try cleaning up your streets.
Kartikey Mishra
Kartikey Mishra Il y a 17 heures
poor bird at 5:50
John Beaver
John Beaver Il y a 17 heures
Dead jig storage. That is why there is 70,000,000 black balls floating in the lake Sort of a waste . Could always grind up the jiigaboos and use them as hog slop.
Ashish Singh
Ashish Singh Il y a 17 heures
9:48, dare u to say, "Matter of Fact" faster than that..!
GODHEAD1 Il y a 18 heures
Estevan Martinez
Estevan Martinez Il y a 18 heures
The sun has been reflecting on the water for many years and noting never happend to it government just wants to brainwash us
Toy For Kids
Toy For Kids Il y a 19 heures
I want to know this
Riefky Setiawan
Riefky Setiawan Il y a 19 heures
for what?
Tattoo Tommy G
Tattoo Tommy G Il y a 19 heures
Food “grade” plastic is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard
Geo Engineering
Geo Engineering Il y a 21 heure
Yup poison the water with plastic . Research Dane wigington exposing illegal geoengineering done by terrorist USA government .
David Il y a 23 heures
A dog's dream come true ! LOL
Sana Naz M Basharat
The amount of awkwardness in that boat makes me wanna dive right into the water.
Oma To Six
Oma To Six Il y a jour
And you people believe this is safe? 🤦🏻‍♀️
덥다 Il y a 13 heures
Probably a lot of microplastic which goes into the water. gg nice idea...
DudemanSwede Il y a jour
Steve Mayers
Steve Mayers Il y a jour
Heat causes bacteria?
Ron Joplin
Ron Joplin Il y a jour
Safe for drinking water because he says so? "Food grade"? Who decides what that is?
rgnestle Il y a jour
I don't care WHY they were there. This was just a cool video!
twowaymuir Il y a jour
Sure hope that the combustion engine on the boat is running on natural gas and not gasoline!
K man
K man Il y a jour
Best Mcdonald's ever!
RO G Il y a jour
Only in California I bet this was expensive this money could of helped alot of homeless people smh
Mr A
Mr A Il y a jour
man how come this video is demonetized??
BloodiestMethod Il y a jour
Does not take much for outboards to leak oil or grease. Idiots should be in a canoe or some custom built mobile barge to pull them around.
coffeehigh420 Il y a jour
you've got a lot of balls posting up a video like this!
Blake Zimmerman Houston
Cool video! Super informative
jlemons006 Il y a jour
are we saying balls right
Scott Norman
Scott Norman Il y a jour
That's slot of balls
Ahmad gh
Ahmad gh Il y a jour
والله ما فهمت ولا شي
ManPower Gaming
ManPower Gaming Il y a jour
A big thank you to Marty Adam's. His excellent representation and explanations of these things made this video possible.
Trevor Phillips
Trevor Phillips Il y a jour
9:49 on 0.25x is pretty inappropriate
max dJ
max dJ Il y a jour
Is it animal safe.
Alexander Valtchev
Alexander Valtchev Il y a jour
MEANWHILE... the SUN is the best disinfectant and you wouldnt need chlorine in the first place. So now we have plastic balls in one of the solar system's most powerful solvents -- in 20 years someone is going to figure out that plastic in the water is also carcinogenic.
King kopin
King kopin Il y a 18 heures
They already stated that the life of the balls is only about 10 years, so there are most likely plans in place to recycle them after that. Also, they stated that the largest reason they added so much chlorine was to discourage algae growth, since algae uses photosynthesis and generally congregates on the surface of water, the shade balls make it practically impossible for the algae to grow. Further, I don't understand why the sun would serve as a disinfectant period, it only stands to support the grow of many microorganisms that use photosynthesis, which in turn allow larger, carnivorous organisms to survive
MrJessDancing Il y a jour
Gasoline Engine on a public water supply? Wouldn't a row boat, canoe, or a vessel with an electric motor be cleaner?
Levi & Travels
Levi & Travels Il y a jour
whats up bro whats up mate
Gerald Spessard
Gerald Spessard Il y a jour
I don't know. Should be white balls. Black balls absorb the sun rays.
slowgaffle Il y a jour
Answer: one for each view this video gets.
Kamran Nasim
Kamran Nasim Il y a jour
why is it for? isn't is plastic which humans are already fighting with????
Alpay Namazi
Alpay Namazi Il y a jour
why they didn't add 4m more to make it 100m??? explain cali
BPK Phoenix
BPK Phoenix Il y a jour
"Its really rare to see 96 million of anything!" GaLlOnS oF oCeAn WaTeR: _AM I A JOKE TO YOU?!_
FBI Train
FBI Train Il y a jour
5:50 the bird got sucked into the engine
jvnice Il y a jour
this was more boring that i expected loll damn
Remya Kesavan
Remya Kesavan Il y a jour
RIP in advance LA people...
munir dion
munir dion Il y a jour
🤣 apa ini maksudnya? Soal jorok? Dendi.. ga takut laah 🤣😘🌹
Chinmay Thoart
Chinmay Thoart Il y a 2 jours
0:56 when Africa was discovered
Strum Dynasty
Strum Dynasty Il y a 2 jours
*B L A C K B A L L S*
Tristan Ferrolino
Tristan Ferrolino Il y a 2 jours
Can we walk in this?
00x000 Il y a 2 jours
What about estrogens from plastic, doesn't that affect male hormones (make them feminine)
FellowRser Il y a 2 jours
To prevent it from drying out.
Sophia Loren Coffee
Sophia Loren Coffee Il y a 2 jours
White People try and kill everything
New Era
New Era Il y a 2 jours
I put my 'Black Balls' in water everyday 😂😂😂😂.
Remarkable SeiF
Remarkable SeiF Il y a 2 jours
Ok, very interesting now foh my mentions
OLD News? Come on that was on TV! There put in there to keep the water from Evaporating? Ding Ding I got it right an never seen your video? So who is right you? Or I think it was Science Channel? I pick the sci Cha.. And what is up with that lady with them big ass sun glass? Is she going for the New Hobo Kelly look? An all that water going to waste behind that bald dude shame on LA for that!!!. Peace out!
CrazyVoid800 Il y a 2 jours
Bobba lakeee
MassDynamic Il y a 2 jours
i want boba
ChopinLikesHentai Il y a 2 jours
what is the answer? i dont want to watch it
00x000 Il y a 2 jours
Keep water cool = less evaporation
Seth Stanley
Seth Stanley Il y a 2 jours
“Why are they black?”
Saurabh Thawali
Saurabh Thawali Il y a 2 jours
Can't they shift filtration system from where it is now instead of inwards to outwards from this reservoir ? I mean whenever water is going out from this reservoir at those points they have only that treatment which removes/reduces bromate from the water using granular activated carbon (naturally) which will be long term & cost effective solution to this problem for long term.
OliwierGG Il y a 2 jours
wypierdalaj kurwa
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World's Lightest Solid!