2003/17 – Alice Springs (Northern Territory) – Radioactivity, E.coli, Hardness, Iodine

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2007/10 – Alice Springs – Radioactivity

2007/8: Nine of the 14 bores supplying Alice Springs were below the gross alpha and gross beta activity concentration screening value of 0.5 Bq/L. Five bores exceeded 0.5 Bq/L for gross alpha but all were below 0.5 Bq/L for K-40 corrected gross beta.

2009/10: Alice Springs bores were assessed for radioactivity levels in June 2008 and February 2010. Eleven of the 16 bores supplying Alice Springs were below the gross alpha and gross beta activity concentration screening value of 0.5 Bq/L. Five bores exceeded 0.5 Bq/L for gross alpha and two of these bores also exceeded 0.5 Bq/L for K-40 corrected gross beta. The total annual radiation dose estimate is reported as the maximum value of all 16 bores.

2009/10: Alice Springs Radiological 1.32mg/L

2003/4: Alice Springs – E.coli

2003/4: E coli (org/100ml) <1 in 98% samples 1 99.4%


Thermotolerant coliforms are a sub-group of coliforms that are able to grow at 44.5 ± 0.2°C. E. coli is the most common thermotolerant coliform present in faeces and is regarded as the most specific indicator of recent faecal contamination because generally it is not capable of growth in the environment. In contrast, some other thermotolerant coliforms (including strains of Klebsiella, Citrobacter and Enterobacter) are able to grow in the environment and their presence is not necessarily related to faecal contamination. While tests for thermotolerant coliforms can be simpler than for E. coli, E. coli is considered a superior indicator for detecting faecal contamination…” ADWG

Alice Springs – Northern Territory – Hardness

2003/04: Alice Springs Hardness 210mg/L

2004/05: Alice Springs Hardness 210mg/L

2006/07: Alice Springs Hardness 224mg/L

2007/08: Alice Springs Hardness 220mg/L

2008/09: Alice Springs Hardness 220mg/L

2009/10: Alice Springs Hardness 220mg/L

2010/11: Alice Springs Hardness 210mg/L

2011/12: Alice Springs Hardness 208mg/L

2013/14: Alice Springs Hardness 213mg/L

2014/15: Alice Springs Hardness 201mg/L

2015/16: Alice Springs Hardness 229mg/L

2016/17: Alice Springs Hardness 217mg/L


“To minimise undesirable build‑up of scale in hot water systems, total hardness (as calcium
carbonate) in drinking water should not exceed 200 mg/L.

Hard water requires more soap than soft water to obtain a lather. It can also cause scale to form on hot water pipes and fittings. Hardness is caused primarily by the presence of calcium and magnesium ions, although other cations such as strontium, iron, manganese and barium can also contribute.”

Australian Drinking Water Guidelines 2011

Alice Springs – Northern Territory – Iodine

2006/07: Alice Springs Iodine 0.14mg/L

2007/8: Alice Springs Iodine 0.15mg/L

2008/09: Alice Springs  Iodine 0.1mg/L

Iodide: Based on health considerations, the concentration of iodide in drinking water should
not exceed 0.5 mg/L.
Iodine: No guideline value has been set for molecular iodine.
The element iodine is present naturally in seawater, nitrate minerals and seaweed, mostly in the form of iodide salts. It may be present in water due to leaching from salt and mineral deposits. Iodide can be oxidised to molecular iodine with strong disinfectants such as chlorine.
Molecular iodine solutions are used as antiseptics and as sanitising agents in hospitals and laboratories.
Iodine is occasionally used for the emergency disinfection of water for field use but is not used for disinfecting larger drinking water supplies. Iodide is used in pharmaceutical and photographic materials. Iodine has a taste threshold in water of about 0.15 mg/L.
Iodide occurs in cows’ milk and seafood. Some countries add iodide to table salt to compensate for iodide-deficient diets.