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Hard water has a high pH due to high levels of calcium, magnesium, and sodium. When used as a carrier, hard water can adversely affect the efficacy of weak acid herbicides, such as glyphosate. Hard water is caused by high levels of cations (positively charges ions), primarily calcium, magnesium and sodium.
To read more on the effects of hard water on herbicide efficacy, check out this article from Roundup Ready PLUS®.