North Cowichan to get UV water filters
Homes and businesses south of Herd Rd. will soon have a different taste to their water, after the district of North Cowichan installs an ultra violet filtering system this summer.
Presently, the district uses chlorine twice a year to flush the mains and reservoirs.
North Cowichan’s manager of Engineering, John McKay, said the UV system should shed light on some of the bad stuff.
“There’s no impact on the water other than it kills bacteria,” he explained. “We’re not having to add anything to the water, we’re just shining a light through it.”
The Chief Medical Health Officer with the Vancouver Island Health Authority, Dr. Paul Hasselback, pointed out that B.C. jurisdictions have been lagging behind national standards when it comes to water quality, but that many are now catching up. Part of that is determining what system is useful based on the nature of the water.
“Chlorine is very good at killing bacteria and killing viruses but actually doesn’t do a very good job when it comes to parasites,” he explained. “UV can be quite good for some of the parasites.”
Hasselback said jurisdictions have been improving their systems since the 1990s, when there were 29 cases of parasites in the province.
McKay said the UV filtration system is costing $4 million and serving some 6,000 homes in the south part of North Cowichan.
It should be up and running before the summer is over.
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