What is Chlorine
Do you know councils and water authorities around the country are moving towards the use of chloramines as an alternative to chlorine?
Chlorine has been used for decades in Australia as a means of sanitising our drinking water. However it produces a byproduct called THM’s; which is a known and proven carcinogen. Due to this, and the low residual life of chlorine, councils and authorities are moving towards the use of chloramines instead.
Chloramines stay in the water longer than chlorine and continue to disinfect in the extremities of extensive pipeline systems. Monochloramine is a weak disinfectant and the most common of the chloramines used in water sanitisation; requiring 25 to 100 times the contact time of free chlorine for equivalent disinfection.
Why is Chlorine bad?
Trihalomethanes are formed as a by-product predominantly when chlorine is used to disinfect water for drinking.
They represent one group of chemicals generally referred to as disinfection by-products. They result from the reaction of chlorine or bromine with organic matter present in the water being treated.
The THMs produced have been associated through epidemiological studies with some adverse health effects.
Many governments set limits on the amount permissible in drinking water. However, trihalomethanes are only one group of many hundreds of possible disinfection by-products—the vast majority of which are not monitored—and it has not yet been clearly demonstrated which of these are the most plausible candidate for causation of these health effects.
93% increased cancer risk
According to the U.S. Council of Environmental Quality “The cancer risk to people who drink chlorinated water is 93 percent higher than those who don’t”.
There is a higher incidence of cancer of the esophagus, rectum, breast, and larynx and a higher incidence of Hodgkin’s disease among those drinking chlorinated water.
Chlorine was first added to a community water system in 1908 in Chicago and was instrumental in eliminating many types of water-borne disease such as Cholera and Typhoid fever. Prior to chlorination, many major cities had death tolls of 1 in 1000 people from Typhoid alone. Chlorine has been used to disinfect municipal water for over 80 years and has had some positive effects on public health. In the 1970’s it was discovered that chlorine, when added to water, forms Trihalomethanes (chlorinated by-products) by combining with certain naturally occurring organic matter such as vegetation and algae.
In 1992 the American Journal of Public Health published a report that showed a 15% to 35% increase in certain types of cancer for people who consume chlorinated water. This report also stated that much of these effects were due to showering in chlorinated water. The National Cancer Institute and the US Council of Environmental Quality estimates cancer risks for people who consume chlorinated water to be 93% higher than for people who do not. The effects of drinking chlorinated water have been debated for decades. However, most experts now agree that there are some significant risks related to consuming chlorine and chlorinated by-products.
Dr. J.M. Price, M.D has made many statements including the following: “The cause of atherosclerosis and resulting heart attacks and strokes is none other than the ubiquitous chlorine in our drinking water.” and that “Chlorine is the greatest crippler and killer of modern times. While it prevented epidemics of one disease, ill was creating another. Two decades ago, after the start of chlorinating our drinking water in 1904. The present epidemic of heart trouble, cancer and senility began.”
Two studies in Epidemiology 1998;9(1):21-28, 29-35 found that lifetime consumption of chlorinated tap water can more than double the risk of bladder and rectal cancers in certain individuals. Both studies examined the lifetime water-consumption patterns, diets and lifestyles of over 2,200 middle-aged and elderly Iowans suffering from either bladder, colon, or rectal cancers. Those profiles were then compared with those of a pool of nearly 2,000 healthy ‘controls’.
The first study found that smoking men who drank chlorinated tap water for more than 40 years faced double the risk of bladder cancer compared with smoking men who drank nonchlorinated water. Women who drank chlorinated water, on the other hand, had only slightly raised risks for bladder cancers, regardless of (their) smoking status.
The second study found that rates for rectal cancers for both sexes escalated with duration of consumption of chlorinated water. Individuals on low-fiber diets who also drank chlorinated water for over 40 years more than doubled their risk for rectal cancer, compared with lifetime drinkers of nonchlorinated water.
How to remove Chlorine
The downside of chloramine, apart from the fact that it contains ammonia, is the difficulty in removing it from drinking water supplies. Standard water filters can only remove 10-25% of their rated capacity of chloramines. Consequently the filter cartridges would need to be changed more often, or a different type of filter used instead.
We can supply filters to remove this product at more effective rates and best of all you can buy these and virtually any other type of filter at wholesale prices.
AquaSafe have many options for removing Chlorine and Chloramine. The Aqua Safe AS100 is capable of removing Chlorine and costs $85.
Our top of the range filtration system is the ASRO4R. It has been designed to remove greater than 99.9% of all contaminants in your drinking water making it more pure than any water you can buy, at a lot lower cost and available on tap when you need it.