CT's desalinated water may have long-term health risks, scientists warn

Scientists in the Western Cape have warned of long-term health risks associated with drinking Cape Town's treated sea water.

Desalinated sea water still carries concentrated traces of contaminants and pollutants, according to scientific researchers from the University of the Western Cape (UWC).

UWC's Professor Leslie Petrik explains that effluent going into the ocean has a concentration of chemicals.

Read: 20% of water in Beaufort West is recycled sewage water. Could Cape Town be next?

She also explains that the desalination intake pipes will be positioned very close to local marine sewage outfall pipes.

According to Prof Petrik, drinking such contaminated water can be linked to health risks such as feminization, cancer and mutagenicity.

Also read: Less flushing in Cape Town could cause more disease-transmission, warns expert

Our studies have shown that there are low concentrations of a plethora of chemicals in the water.

Prof Leslie Petrik, Leader of the Environmental and Nano Science Research group at UWC

The desalination plants are going to be relatively close to where the sewage outfall pipes are.

Prof Leslie Petrik, Leader of the Environmental and Nano Science Research group at UWC

These compounds are coming through into drinking water and there are a variety of health effects that have already been tracked.

Prof Leslie Petrik, Leader of the Environmental and Nano Science Research group at UWC

Listen to the professor outline the concerns with desalination:


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI

CapeTalk welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

  • Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Religious intolerance
  • Cyber bullying
  • Hate speech
  • Derogatory language
  • Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the CapeTalk community a safe and welcoming space for all.

CapeTalk reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

CapeTalk is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

Read More
Why moving Parly to Pretoria could be costly

Why moving Parly to Pretoria could be costly

Wesgro CEO Tim Harris argues that relocating Parliament to Pretoria might not make the most economic sense.

Parkwood protesters and police in a tense standoff

Parkwood protesters and police in a tense standoff

Community members are throwing stones, while law enforcement officers are responding with rubber bullets and tear-gas.

20% of water in Beaufort West is recycled sewage water. Could Cape Town be next?

20% of water in Beaufort West is recycled sewage water. Could Cape Town be next?

Water expert Pierre Marais says effluent supplied by the municipality undergoes a lengthy treatment process before it's drinkable.

Desalination plants aren't a panacea for water crisis, says myth-busting expert

Desalination plants aren't a panacea for water crisis, says myth-busting expert

Dr David Olivier says a range of combined efforts are needed to fight the water crisis and the misinformation that surrounds it.

Less flushing in Cape Town could cause more disease-transmission, warns expert

Less flushing in Cape Town could cause more disease-transmission, warns expert

Epidemiologist and health expert Dr Jo Barnes says less flushing poses a risk for the City's sewage system and health of locals.

CoCT denies plans to build desalination plant on Mouille Point promenade

CoCT denies plans to build desalination plant on Mouille Point promenade

A small-scale temporary plant may be built in the harbour area of Granger Bay.

Popular articles
[LISTEN] Van Breda's call to emergency services: 'My family and I were attacked'

[LISTEN] Van Breda's call to emergency services: 'My family and I were attacked'

The chilling call Henri van Breda made to emergency services on the night his mother, father and big brother were hacked to death.

[LISTEN] Dailene, the lady behind the video from Thursday's heist in Boksburg

[LISTEN] Dailene, the lady behind the video from Thursday's heist in Boksburg

Another heist was carried out in Boksburg on Thursday morning and led to five people being arrested.

CT's desalinated water may have long-term health risks, scientists warn

CT's desalinated water may have long-term health risks, scientists warn

Desalination is not a risk-free solution to the water crisis and could have health implications, local experts have argued.

Hope Ramaphosa: Cyril never lifted a finger to me, he wouldn't beat a woman

Hope Ramaphosa: Cyril never lifted a finger to me, he wouldn't beat a woman

Cyril Ramaphosa's ex-wife says abuse allegations spread by EFF leader Julius Malema are an attempt to tarnish his reputation.

How businessman Max Lichaba struck gold with his jewellery company

How businessman Max Lichaba struck gold with his jewellery company

Entrepreneur Max Lichaba built his own empire and is the CEO of Lichaba Creations and several other businesses. This is his story.

Is Shakespeare still relevant to SA's school curriculum?

Is Shakespeare still relevant to SA's school curriculum?

How relevant is Shakespeare in SA's English literature which is written in a manner that no one speaks today?

3 reasons for the petrol price hike (and why it will hurt more than you think)

3 reasons for the petrol price hike (and why it will hurt more than you think)

Economist Dawie Roodt says that the petrol price hike is going to boost the cycle of inflation and force interest rates up.