Organization: FilterPure filters
Author: Lisa Ballantine
FilterPure is an innovative, patent pending, water purification technology that is completely sustainable and effective in developing countries. The system is based on the silver-infused ceramic water filtration process invented about 200 years ago to combat the outbreak of cholera in England. Since then the technology has been improved upon and advanced, and even now ceramic pot filters (CPF) are widely used to solve the issue of unsafe drinking water in developing nations.
FilterPure is a U.S. tax-exempt, non-profit organization committed to providing clean, safe drinking water to the under-served populations of the developing world. Our strategy is to implement local and sustainable enterprises that manufacture and distribute effective, appropriate point-of-use CPF for home use. FilterPure is developing a program based upon strategies of affordable water filtration, sustainable enterprise, and local education. The solution is designed to be replicated worldwide.
FilterPure serves the Dominican Republic and Haiti
Currently, FilterPure has two active projects on the island of Hispaniola, one each in the Dominican Republic and in Haiti.
The Dominican Republic project, called AguaPure, was initiated in 2006, and since then has distributed more than 25,000 filters to Dominican families, enabling at least 150,000 people to gain access to potable drinking water. AguaPure began their project using a commonly accepted technology. Through consistent testing, AguaPure realized early on that the filter technology needed improvement. Working together with an international, commercial water purification expert, AguaPure re-engineered the filter to achieve at least a 99.9 percent microbiological effectiveness rate and a life of five years.
AguaPure has worked alongside organizations such as the Pan American Health Organization and Save the Children to bring higher levels of success in water programs. AguaPure has also been studied by PUCMM, a local university. PUCMM found, after only one month of use, 100 percent of the people using the filter were benefiting from improved health. AguaPure has been operating without the support of grant funds for two years, and shows every possibility of being completely sustainable.
With our Dominican factory so close to the epicenter of the earthquake, FilterPure had a unique opportunity to respond to the needs of the Haitian people. Filterpure was present in Haiti, distributing much needed filters only days after the disaster. Since that time we have distributed more than 2500 filters into the areas of most need, and have built a facility in Jacmel, with an organization called Wine to Water. They will begin production in the next month. We feel that a simple solution for the water of Haiti is critical at this time.
For more on the Haiti project, see this CNN report.
The FilterPure technology is simple, sustainable
The technology of the water filter is simple, effective, and, sustainable. A round-bottom ceramic pot is made from a mixture of clay, a combustible material (sawdust or rice husks), and colloidal silver. The colloidal silver is a naturally occurring anti-bacterial which improves the bacteria removal rate for the filter. First, the clay and combustible are sieved through fine mesh screens, then mixed together with a measured amount of silver and water until a homogeneous mixture is formed. The mixture is made into a filter using a filter press. It is kiln fired, burning out the combustible material and leaving micro pores coated with the silver to clean and disinfect the water. During the firing process, about one-half inch of charcoal is produced within the filter to improve taste and color. The filter, which is designed with a rim, is placed on a five gallon plastic storage bucket with a spigot at the bottom for dispensing. The effective useful life of the filter is at least five years.
The FilterPure CPF has consistently performed at a rate of 99.9 percent removal for bacteria and pathogens in the field over the past four years. The filter can support a family of six for at least five years, and the cost per filtration unit is approximately thirty dollars. The overall cost to clean a family’s critical water supply is less than two cents per day per family.
Ceramic water filtration is considered to be one of the most promising options for treating drinking water at the household level in developing countries. FilterPure has gained knowledge and active support from a number of sources and is now poised to build the infrastructure necessary to meet its goals of improved human survival rates, better quality of life, reduced poverty through employment, and communities educated about water health and disease prevention.
Please support us in our mission to deliver this safe water solution to those who are greatly under served.
Filter Pure is recognized as a US 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization.