Bushfires, Floods and your water, and Coronavirus (COVID-18) strategies.

Bushfires, Floods and your water, and Coronavirus (COVID-18) strategies.

Author: Ian Blair Hamilton, Founder, Alkaway

We’ve kept this report in basic form. Now is not the time for fancy graphics. Our message is what is important and we suggest you print this off and share it, or pass it on via email or facebook to your friends.

We look at the problems that we have right now with our water supplies. This relates to (in particular) the results of fire and flood in New South Wales and Queensland although it will most likely relate very soon to West Australia.

We then take a look at CoronaVirus and water.


The bushfires that we have experienced so far have been catastrophic.
Vast areas of bushland have been decimated. We know – and have experienced the results in the form of the huge smoke and ash curtains that have sent thousands of people to the doctors or to hospitals for respiratory complaints.

However – what we have not considered is the fact that ash from fires is a form of oxide. It’s an oxide of everything it has burnt. It burns a house or a galvanized tank or a car or a road the minerals and the toxins in those materials ascend into our atmosphere – just like the smoke from a burning tree.

Anyone who has a swimming pool in Sydney would have seen the effect of this in the surface of their pool which became black and discoloured through ash falling. Layne Beachley, the champion woman surfer described it as surreal when she surfed in Sydney last week and became covered with ash. ash was all over the surface of the sea.

While this may appear to be a cosmetic problem, it is far more than that, because the ash is also falling into all of our absolutely essential water storage areas – the places we get our drinking water from.

We have no idea of the makeup of the toxins in the ash and yet we have to continue to supply people with drinking water. That is problem number one.

Problem number 2 is waiting in the wings.

Problem number 2 is the vast amount of ash and loose soil now on the ground in all of the burnt areas which feed our water catchment areas. Ash acts like a sponge, soaking up water and converting to a huge amount of debris in fine form – ready to be washed into our catchment areas. All it needed (according to a university expert) was a minimum of 50 mil of rainfall in those burnt areas that feed the catchments to start a flow of water into the catchments – and that water will contain the ash. It will also contain an enormous amount of organic matter because the ground surface of all of the burnt areas now has nothing to protect it, nothing to hold it from being washed down into the Reservoir.

These last weeks have seen this happen..

Far more than the 50mm the expert suggested was the tipping point, and already we have seen water safety notices from Sydney Water.
This doesn’t mean that only Sydney has problems. It simply means that the problems we are aware of so far have happened in Sydney’s water supply.

When this occurs there is another problem. We call it turbidity.
It relates to the increase in the amount of dissolved and undissolved solids in the water. Even if that organic matter was not of itself harmful, it still places a huge load on the water purification system.

Before it even chlorinates the water, the water authority has to allow it to settle to reduce this turbidity so that relatively clean water can be passed on to the next step, chlorination. When turbidity is high (and it is very high at the moment). the efficiency of the water process suffers. It is already double normal in Newcastle. In Woy Woy we have brown water coming out of the taps, clearly indicating that the systems in place are not capable of doing their job.

It makes sense. Our water supply or water filtration system is installed by and budgeted for by a government. It is designed for normal situations and is not necessarily designed for cataclysmic events such as these. And it is never state of the art. More.. state of the dollar.

Problem Three

Chlorine Byproducts

The next problem we have is when organic matter reacts with chlorine, The result is what is termed disinfection byproducts or trihalomethanes.

These are carcinogens. Unless the authority can remove sufficient organic material from the water before chlorinating the result will be trihalomethanes in our water.

Finally (to make it even worse)
Problem 4. Drought.

Low water levels.

Of themselves, low water levels are not a problem. The problem arises when a reservoir reaches low water levels. The wildlife – consisting of bacteria consisting of parasites, consisting of anything that is alive and shouldn't be there – is concentrated. It was there when the reservoir was full and now it's there when the reservoir is less full.

Think of it this way. If you boil a pot of water until half of the water has gone has anything in the water as far as contaminants been taken out? No. It's the same with a reservoir. The percentage of contaminants in the remaining water has doubled.

So the water authority has a new problem. It has far higher concentrations of health-threatening parasites and bacteria. The only methods that they have to overcome this problem is chemical. There are no other methods. They have to increase dosages of chlorine.

(I can remember taking a shower during the last drought breathing in the chlorine gas it was not an experience I would like to repeat!)

If you're using the water for your garden and it has excess chlorine you’ll kill everything in the soil. If you're trying to cook or make your coffee with the water you'll find it affects every recipe you have – and yet it is the only thing the water authority can do. And of course, chemicals do not remove parasites. They kill them and their dead bodies flow on.

Let’s not forget the "Usual Suspects’’

Nothing has really changed in our ‘normal’ contaminants that – even with no bushfires – mean we already get a chemical cocktail of chlorine, chloramines and fluoride. Add to that local chemical cocktail ingredients like arsenic, PFOAs, nitrates, lead, heavy metals, residual pharmaceuticals…. each one of them a big reason to own a water filter.

Problem 5: Flood Water Mixing

It goes without saying that floods affect water catchments. Water enters catchments from everywhere around them. Whatever has been dumped on the ground in the remote bushland near a catchment breaks down and enters the flow.

A simple example from our own 1-acre home: we had so much rain so fast that our septic settlement tranch filled to capacity. The water level kept rising all the way to the surface until it ran backwards up the pipe to the trench and filled our septic system, which then overflowed into our back garden, with associated stench. This is the sort of unpredictable consequence of flooding.

Ways you can protect yourself from these problems

In 1998 and in 2007 most people chose reverse osmosis as a way to remove everything from their water.

Reverse osmosis is very effective at removing everything from water if sediment or turbidity levels are relatively normal or you are connected to a functioning municipal supply.

In situations like this where we have increased turbidity, reverse osmosis system need more pre-filtration in the form of carbon – otherwise it will block up very quickly and you’ll spend hours upon hours under the sink changing filters. Or as is usually the case, calling up your supplier to send someone out because changing RO filters is not easy. That is if you know it has run out of filtering power.

There’s no easy way on an RO to know it isn’t working properly.

The other problem with reverse osmosis that we have today – which we did not have in the previous water crisis is (for many of us still short on water) overall lack of water. The best reverse osmosis system on the market still wastes as much water as it gives. If you get a litre of pure water from your reverse osmosis system a litre disappears down the drain.

If you are capable of collecting that water that would normally go down the drain (in a bucket under the sink!) you will find that all of the dissolved solids we spoke about are now in that wastewater. The only good news about that is that plants like water with ample dissolved solids so if you do collect the water in a bucket and carry it into the garden the plants will thank you for it. If you don't and you allow the water to go down the drain you are certainly not playing your part in community water conservation.

in 1998 and in 2007 filtration methods other than reverse osmosis were not as sophisticated as they are today. We now have filtration systems with results on a par with reverse osmosis which do not waste any water. This means a saving in cost of system – but also a simpler, more manageable system.

We need to say that a cheap filter from the local hardware store is not going to do the job for you. The only thing it will give you is a feeling of safety. The configurations of products that we are showing you have been designed specifically for the present water crisis and beyond.

We are expecting many people to contact us, and based on what happened last time (1998 and in 2007) we believe many people may be disappointed due to a lack of product availability. This time around we expect supply lines from China to be severely affected, and are grateful we have our main products made in USA.

However, we still expect that our products will not be available as they are in less uncertain times, simply because it takes around six months from order to delivery.

I suggest that you read this document carefully and if possible make your choice before calling on us for advice about your particular water filtration options..

The Final One: CoronaVirus

Very few people really understand a virus – what it is, how it moves, how it can exist seemingly inert on a surface. I’d suggest, given the situation, that it might be a good time to do a little self-education. Knowing what it does and does not do is far better than the fear of ignorance, and then listening to the usual crazy Facebook theories.

We can take some succour from the fact that CV transfers are not unlike influenza. The way we protect ourselves from influenza are the ways we can protect ourselves from CV. And of course, the 20x fatality of CV over influenza is a big reason to take precautions.

Many years ago I took a day trip with a friend who was a science teacher. We visited the local dam which supplied Byron Bay. It’s called Rocky Creek Dam.

“See those waterbirds?” said my friend. “They come from the Northern Hemisphere. They migrate here every year. That’s how we get bird flu.”
“How’s that?” I asked.
“Most of the people who get bird flu have had close contact with infected birds or with surfaces that have been contaminated by the birds' saliva, mucous, or droppings. It is also possible to get it by breathing in droplets or dust that contain the virus. Wild birds poop in reservoirs. That’s how!” he replied.

So far this hasn’t been shown to apply to COVID-18. But what it showed me was how little I knew about a disease that kill thousands of Australians a year.

What we do know is that it’s predominantly person to person, but more data through higher infection rates means it is revealing more of its secrets every day.

So it’s my opinion that immunity is going to be the biggest factor we can strive to maintain or improve. It follows that people who don’t care for themselves health-wise and spend a lot of their free time in crowded places may be more vulnerable.

I’m suggesting that if two people, one with poor immunity and one with good immunity are exposed to the virus, I’d like to be the high immunity one.

So what can I offer to you that might help you increase your own immune levels?

I’m not a doctor or a scientist, but I do have one fact to offer. Make of it what you will. Since 2000, My wife and I have only had colds twice. Both cold events happened when we were overseas and could not access the water we usually drink.

What is it in this water that gave us the gift of 20 years of high immunity? And did it? Really?
We can’t say. That would make it a medical claim, and we are not qualified to make that leap. (What's more, there's a million dollar fine for doing so.)

Until only a few years ago, we thought that it was because the water was alkaline. Today, thanks to some amazing path-finding scientists, we know it’s molecular hydrogen.

Even in the small amounts, our early water filter ionizers gave us, it seemed to affect our health.

Again, I stress, I am not a scientist and obviously, this is far from scientific opinion.
And again, as before make of this what you will.

Today the ways of gaining access to molecular hydrogen have improved exponentially. We can drop a tablet in a glass of water and get 8 times the H2 we received from our long gone electric water ionizers. You can carry a portable hydrogen generator that infuses H2 in 5 minutes wherever you may be. Or you can attach a water filter to your kitchen tap that not only destroys or removes viruses but also infuses hydrogen into the water.

Or you can do both.

I don’t expect everyone to accept what I have said.
We are, after all, a sample of two. But last week I happened upon a patent for a molecular hydrogen product that claimed relief from the common cold. As most of us know, that’s a pretty big claim.

Then another surprise: buried within the patent details was a claim that it could be effective against COVID-18: CoronaVirus.Proof? No. Worth a look? Certainly!

So what does this all mean?
To me, it means I continue to use a water filter that kills or excludes viruses. And I continue to drink water that has appeared to help me and my partner for the last two decades to maintain a level of health none of our local friends seem to have achieved.

We are not making any claims about whether it will or will not protect you from COVID-18. We are simply suggesting that based on our past experience, on the science of molecular hydrogen (over 1000 studies) and on what we have read and observed so far, that we are very grateful to be able to access hydrogen water every day of our lives.

A final Hygiene Question Answered
After all the publicity about how to defend ourselves from COVID-18 one thing stands out: hand washing. It’s an obvious one and the experts are saying it’s far more important than a mask, which basically protects others if you are infected.

Why hand washing is so important.
It’s important because of what we do with our hands. We touch things. And viruses – including COVID-18, have the ability to remain on surfaces and infected person has touched in a semi-dormant state. This obviously reduces their energy requirements until someone – a possible host – comes along and touches the object. Then it returns to life, begins multiplying and…

This isn’t anything new. It applies and has applied to all disease control. That’s why you see the videos of the Chinese spraying or wiping everything anyone may have touched.

Here’s a list of the chemicals that may kill viruses on contact, according to the EPA, US.

Active Ingredient (A.I.)

1 Accelerated hydrogen peroxide (0.5%)a

2 Benzalkonium chloride* (0.05%)b

3 Chloroxylenol (0.12%)c

4 Ethyl alcohol (70%)d

5 Iodine in iodophor (50 ppm)b

6 Isopropanol (50%)b

7 Povidone-iodine (1% iodine)d

8 Sodium hypochlorite (0.05 – 0.5%)d, e

9 Sodium chlorite (0.23%)b

Yours not on the list?
Here's the full EPA list of all products

There is another one that I am using.

It’s called hypochlorous acid and I make it at home from salt. I can brew up a couple of litres, store it and use it for many, many things. I’ve seen the science and I believe it kills viruses, as long as its pH is 2.5 or lower.

It’s already used worldwide in progressive large scale kitchens in place of detergents. Here in Australia it’s used by top restaurateurs, by Parliament House, by the main Meals On Wheels commissary and almost all large retirement homes.

In these installations it is actually plumbed into their water system so it’s on tap, but we make it here at home with a simple jug and a bit of pure salt. Add water, add salt, switch on and a few minutes later we have pH2.5 hypochlorous acid water.

Cassie loves it.
She’s particularly impressed by its ability to clean the toilet bowl! Just splash some in and leave it. No problem with the septic and a sparkly clean bowl. What more could a girl want?

So here’s the thing. I have in front of me a long list of laboratory results for hypochlorous acid water showing amazing results equal to the best disinfectants. I DO NOT have a test showing its efficacy for Coronavirus. So I am between a rock and a hard place:

1. I can wait until I can find a laboratory that can test hypochlorous acid water’s effectiveness against COVID-18,


2. I can tell people about what I have learned and what I consider it MAY be capable of and let them make their own mind up.

I chose the latter. I DON’T know that it will work..
But as I write, news has arrived that masks may actually make things worse, and that Clorox, the most used disinfectant in the prevention campaign, is also unproven in the laboratory against CV.

So as I see it, it’s about as proven as anything else.

I’m importing six more of the acid water jug and trialling it with our team. I want their feedback before we go any further, because this is potentially of extreme importance.

So PLEASE! No phone calls, no emails.
We will definitely keep you apprised of the progress we make via this list. If you have friends you feel could benefit from this article, here’s the link for them to get on the same list you are on so they can stay up to date,
https://www.alkaway.com.au/ (Bottom of page)
and you can share this article with them by sending them this page address.

I expect this small contribution may create as many questions as answers. COVID-18 is still revealing new aspects of itself. I encourage you to investigate and learn all you can now.

And.. stay in touch.

To our health!

Ian Blair Hamilton

Email: Info@alkaway.com.au
Website: alkaway