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Successful Safety and Water event in Johannesburg highlights vital role of chlorine in Africa

From 23-25 July 2019, the World Chlorine Council (WCC) held a successful Safety and Water event in Johannesburg, South Africa. With over 60 participants from across Africa, India, Europe and Asia, the three-day workshop brought together producers, distributors and users of chlorine.

During the first day, the focus was on chlorine safety with diverse discussions on a range of topics. These included chlorine incident avoidance and risk assessment and the vital role that training plays in the safe handling of chlorine.

This was followed by a fascinating site visit to the Rietvlei Water Treatment plant, where participants learned how chlorine can be safely applied to disinfect drinking water to protect people around the world from water-borne illness. Of interest to attendees were the challenges faced in supplying both high quality and sufficient quantities of water.

This led seamlessly to the final day, the African Water Forum. Here, a team of international experts instructed the audience on water related topics. These included how chlorine is essential in improving the health of 1.8 billion people world-wide who still drink contaminated water and the role of chlorine in achieving the United Nation Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs). They also gave presentations on supplying clean water at household, community and city scales, which were well received.

The African Water Forum was chaired by Deidre Penfold of the Chemical and Allied Industry Association (CAIA) who noted “The experts have provided us with a lot of excellent information. As part of our Responsible Care work, it is encouraging to see how people at all levels are contributing to the UN SDGs. The expert advice from this event will help to further develop South Africa’s input to these important goals”.

Many thanks were also given to Sasol and NCP Chlorchem, who hosted the meeting.

New leaflet explains how to disinfect cisterns using chlorine

In collaboration with Andrew Robertson at the Water Engineers for the Americas, the World Chlorine Council has recently released a new, informative leaflet on how to disinfect cisterns using chlorine chemistry.

In many parts of the world, individual homes store collected drinking water in large tanks or cisterns. In order to keep these tanks clean and the household protected from water-borne illnesses, these tanks need to be regularly cleaned and disinfected. This helps to get rid of any potentially harmful bacteria or viruses that are growing within. Here, chlorine chemistry is vital due to the excellent and proven disinfectant properties of hypochlorite in addition to its affordability and applicability across a wide range of cistern sizes.

The new leaflet explains how to safely and effectively disinfect cisterns via simple diagrams. It is hoped that this leaflet can be used to safeguard the health of people in smaller communities across the globe.

New website shows how chlorine is enabling a more sustainable future

Chlor-alkali chemistry is essential to help achieve many of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The 17 SDGs are at the heart of global efforts to build a better world for people and our planet by 2030. Adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015, the SDGs are a call for action by all countries to promote prosperity whilst protecting the environment. As such, the World Chlorine Council (WCC), has prepared a new website that lists the contributions that chlor-alkali can make.

The WCC brings people together from around the globe to discuss, partner, and further global progress toward sustainability and achieve the SDGs, among many other topics.

You can find out more about which SDGs in particular are supported by chlorine chemistry on the WCC website at https://worldchlorine.org/sustainability/ or in this summary brochure.

New website highlights benefits of chlor-alkali

Euro Chlor, the European chlor-alkali association, has recently unveiled its new website. The new online portal has been designed to promote the benefits of chlor-alkali and its products and the many jobs that rely on them whilst spreading information on best practices in safety, health and environmental protection.

Euro Chlor’s 34 producer members operate 65 manufacturing locations in 19 European countries, representing 97% of all European production capacity.

Euro Chlor represents the interests of chlor-alkali producers in Europe and is an active member of the World Chlorine Council.

Euro Chlor’s managing director, Dr Marleen Pauwels, noted that “We are proud of our brand new online presence which, alongside our social media channels, will help us to better support a safe, sustainable and successful chlor-alkali industry for Europe”.

The site is available at www.eurochlor.org.

New video from Chlorine Chemistry Division shows the importance of chlorine in drinking water

The American Chemistry Council’s Chlorine Chemistry Division has released an excellent new video, focusing on the key role that chlorine chemistry plays in protecting drinking water.


 

It shows how chlorine gets rid of bacteria, viruses, and parasites from water to keep us healthy. It also keeps drinking water safe as it makes the journey from the water treatment facility to our glass.

This video is part of a wider series  that shows other benefits of chlorine chemistry and how it truly is the ‘Element of Surprise’.

More on this can be found via the website – https://www.elementofsurprise.org

Euro Chlor Launches New Digital Version of 2017-2018 Industry Review

The first ever digital version of Euro Chlor’s Industry Review has recently been launched at https://chlorineindustryreview.com. This 2017/2018 version covers the most important European industry information from the past year divided up into five sections – Sustainability, Safety, Regulatory, Manufacturing & applications, and About Euro Chlor.

The updated Industry Review contains noteworthy stories, interactive figures, and the latest data and statistics. On the homepage there is an introduction video and speech from Euro Chlor’s Executive Director Dolf van Wijk and Management Committee Chair Dieter Schnepel. Also find investment, production, and capacity highlights, and how Euro Chlor members have helped to ensure the safe use of chemicals.

Euro Chlor is in the process of moving from print to a digital format for the Euro Chlor Industry Review, and would appreciate you spending a few minutes to evaluate the new online version. Click here to complete the online survey or contact eurochlor@cefic.be to give your feedback.

A summarized version of the review is also available in print and downloadable PDF format at the bottom of the homepage.

WCC Exhibits at 2018 UN High Level Political Forum

WCC Exhibit at 2018 UN High Level Political on Sustainable Development

The World Chlorine Council is honored to exhibit at the 2018 United Nations (UN) High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) with partners from Water Engineers for the Americas and Haiti-Philanthropy. This year the HLPF is focused on six Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): SDG 6, Clean Water and Sanitation; SDG 7, Affordable and Clean Energy; SDG 11, Sustainable Cities and Communities; SDG 12, Responsible Consumption and Production; SDG 15, Life on Land; and, SDG 17, Partnerships for the Goals. All of these SDGs are touched by chlorine chemistry and organizations such as the WCC.

For SDG 6, chlorine plays an especially critical role in making water safe to drink, disinfecting wastewater, and as a component of water infrastructure through PVC pipes. SDG 7 is supported by chlorine chemistry as a building block chemistry in the manufacture of key ingredients in solar panels, wind turbines, and hybrid car batteries. Chlorine chemistry helps achieve SDG 11 in its role to better transportation networks, provide affordable housing materials, and manufacture telecommunications and computer technology. Using chlorine chemistry to manufacture titanium and titanium dioxide results in less waste, conserves resources, and contributes to a circular economy, exemplifying SDG 12. Lastly, SDG 15 is aided by chlorine chemistry in the manufacturing of crop protection compounds that improve agricultural yields, reduce soil erosion, and help prevent habitat loss.

Chlorine chemistry is essential to help achieve many of the SDGs. Additionally, so are organizations like the WCC that bring people together from around the globe to discuss, partner, and further global progress toward sustainability.

Combating Mold and Disease Transmission in Puerto Rico

Andrew Robertson instructs community leaders in a train-the-trainer session on packaging donated chlorine disinfectant for individual household disinfection and mold removal in Canóvanas, Puerto Rico.

Caribbean hurricanes Irma and Maria of the 2017 season, now distant memories for many, remain top of mind for Puerto Ricans who are still recovering from those historic storms. During the hurricanes, many homes in Puerto Rico flooded with contaminated water. Worse, many homes had their roofs blown away, so every time it rains, the homes flood again. Water finds its way under roofs and in walls and ceilings, causing a major infestation of mold and other microbes.

Through a donation of 4,000 pounds of chlorine disinfectant from the American Chemistry Council’s Chlorine Chemistry Division and a partnership with the Water Engineers for the Americas (WEFTA), the people of Puerto Rico learned first-hand how chlorine chemistry can help them recover from the Hurricanes.

WEFTA engineer-volunteer Andrew Robertson and his daughter Kati traveled to Puerto Rico. They visited five communities with a combined population of 10,000 people to help residents learn how to disinfect their homes using a granular chlorine product NaDCC. Their strategy was to identify local leaders in each community and train them on how to (a) safely package the disinfectant into smaller portions, and (b) use the disinfectant safely in the home. The leaders were then responsible for distributing the chlorine and teaching their neighbors on how to use the disinfectant in their homes safely.

These trying times in Puerto Rico underscore the importance of organisational partnerships, such as this one, which facilitated recovery from natural disaster with the help of chlorine chemistry.

Nanomaterials Use Chlorine Chemistry to Improve Solar Power Plants, Camera and Virtual Reality Optics

Depiction of titanium dioxide nanoparticles.

In two recent developments, titanium dioxide (TiO2) is driving advances in solar power generation and cameras and optical devices for virtual and augmented reality. Chlorine facilitates the production of TiO2 by transforming and purifying the materials.

Heat transfer in solar power plants could be made dramatically more efficient using nanofluids made with TiO2, reports Phys.org. A recent paper in the Renewable Energy journal describes a way to improve the efficiency of this heat transfer by adding tiny particles of titanium dioxide. Known as nanoparticles, these increase the amount of electricity generated from solar plants. Thanks to the titanium dioxide nanoparticles, the ability of the heat-transfer material to conduct heat rose by almost 53%, and the efficiency of the nanofluids improved by up to 35%.

In the second innovation, TiO2 has been used to make a distortion-free lens with a simple, flat surface, which may revolutionize optical devices (Nature Nanotechnology). Using tiny, fin-shaped particles of TiO2 known as nanofins, this can focus the full spectrum of visible light at high resolution on one spot, which previously required a stack of bulky, curved conventional lenses. These were required because light of various colors travels at different speeds through lenses. The new ‘metalens’ – which is reportedly thin, easy to manufacture and cost effective – opens new possibilities both in traditional cameras and in virtual and augmented reality (Photonics.com).

Chlorine Chemistry Combats Mosquito-Borne Diseases

In response to the Zika virus epidemic of 2015-2016, the Brazilian Association for the Chlor-Alkali and Derivatives Industry (Abiclor) launched the CloroNaZika campaign. This campaign informed citizens and raised awareness on how to prevent the proliferation of the mosquito Aedes aegypti by using chlorine bleach. As the Zika epidemic lessened in 2017, the campaign continues today as Cloro no Aedes.

Scientific studies from the University of São Paulo have shown that chlorine bleach is almost 100% effective in preventing the development of Aedes aegypti mosquito larvae, the type of mosquito that spreads Zika, dengue, chikungunya, and yellow fever. Since 80% of mosquitos’ proliferation starts inside residences, the campaign guides people on how to use chlorine bleach to clean bins, toilets, gardens, water tanks, drains, plumbing, planters and other items that collect water to prevent the growth of mosquito larvae.

Abiclor, in partnership with the Brazilian government, distributed leaflets in strategic spots of Brazil’s major cities containing information on how to properly use chlorine bleach to be effective against mosquito larvae development. Radio and print ads also helped spread the message to the people of Brazil. The campaign continues to be publicized on social media, including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

In this application, chlorine chemistry has proven to help the people of Brazil combat the diseases spread by the mosquito Aedes aegypti.

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