Understanding the Role of Chlorine in the Water Supply

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Why is chlorine used in the water supply if it is not safe to consume?

Understanding the Role of Chlorine in the Water Supply

Many people mistakenly believe that chlorine can't possibly be harmful since it is approved for use in the water supply by the government entities that regulate the process by which water is treated for public consumption. It's important for people to understand the history of water purification to put the use of chlorine in the water supply into the proper perspective.

During the 19th Century, when chlorine first became commonly used in water treatment, the outbreak of deadly waterborne diseases was rampant. People often died from illnesses such as cholera and typhoid, which were transmitted primarily via the water supply. Chlorine was introduced to the water supply as a means of putting a stop to the spread of these deadly illnesses. Today, these types of waterborne diseases have been largely contained.

Even though chlorine was the best option for stopping the spread of disease in the 19th century, this is no longer the case today. Chlorine is the least expensive technique for treating water, but it is certainly not the healthiest solution. Since the 19th century, the health risks associated with chlorine consumption and absorption have become widely known. There are now many better ways to remove contaminants from water, such as via water filters, yet this chemical is still utilized to treat public water supplies throughout the United States and many other parts of the world.

While it's important to drink water that doesn't contain harmful bacteria, it's also important to take steps to avoid consuming water contaminated with chlorine and other dangerous chemicals. Chlorine serves a purpose in water treatment, and you can easily utilize a water filtration system to de-chlorinate the tap water in your home. Using water filters is the best solution for making sure you are always able to enjoy safe and healthful water for drinking, cooking, and bathing.



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