Chloramines, and the Fate of Charlottesville’s Water Supply

High quality water is more than the dream of the conservationists, more than a political slogan; high quality water, in the right quantity at the right place at the right time, is essential to health, recreation, and economic growth.  -Edmund S. Muskie, U.S. Senator, speech, 1 March 1966 

So, as many of you already are aware, Charlottesville is in the process of deciding on the fate of our water supply…or really OUR fate. Rivanna Water Authority held a community forum last month to inform us about the choices for purifying the city water. The panel was presenting information and focusing on the “benefits” of using chloramines. Half way thru the discussion is when I noticed another option besides chloramines was first mentioned. There was a group of educated panelists who gave us their opinions and worked for companies or cities that were already chloramined. There were also panelists from the Community Organizers Against Chloramines with a lot of information and facts about the possible damage of chloramines: to people, infants, fish and water pipes.

Basically, Chloramines break down into known carcinogens and can wreak havoc on pipes in houses (leaching lead), cause skin rashes on people and probably animals. It can not be used in fish tanks and there is extensive evidence of death to marine life when exposed to Chloramines. Chloramines do not evaporate out of the water EVER, you can not filter it out, you can not boil it out. Filtering with Brita or Pur won’t work for Chloramines!

Granulated Activated Carbon, selected by Crozet for their water source, seems like it is the better choice.  Not only does it remove bad tastes, it will also filter out the bacteria  that the EPA is concerned about and it will remove other contaminants in our water. Taking out things instead of adding things, in my opinion, is the way to go.

Especially things that there are no studies on the long term safety of! Why would we add something to our water on purpose that kills fish!  As a person that is interested in fermenting foods, like making sauerkraut and mead, I would not be able to use my water to do it.

I am on the verge of buying property in the city of Charlottesville, after 4 years of living here and budgeting extensively.  I have decided to postpone buying a home until I hear what the city is going to do. If the progressive city that we live in is going to go for contaminating our own water supply, then I don’t know if it really has our best interests in mind, and I don’t think I want to buy property with-in the city limits. Also, the cost of replacing plumbing gaskets and pipes as a result of chloramines in the water has to be factored in as a regular expense and an inconvenience for homeowners. I think it is our duty to look out for the small and weak who would be most affected by this, be it in possible lead contamination for small children, rashes in the sensitive population or maybe less than healthy individuals with kidney issues.

-Lea Bennett

Assistant Supplement & Bodycare Manager at Rebecca’s Natural Food

Filthy water cannot be washed.  -WEST AFRICAN PROVERB

All the water that will ever be is, right now.  -National Geographic, October 1993

Tonight is the Public Hearing on how our city will comply with the new EPA regulations and the last chance you may have on voicing your opinions to the City Officials and RWSA before the decision is made on what to add to our city water.

Please come and hear what they have to say about it, even if you don’t know one way or the other what you want. The powers-that-be need to know that we care about decisions that affect our health, our children, and our city.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Lane Auditorium, Albemarle County Office Building
McIntire Road, Charlottesville VA

7:00 pm

Here are links to pamphlets opposing the use, giving details on some side effects of Chloramines in the water