Cathal Walsh
Environmental Journalist
Thursday, 11th July 2019
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Table of Contents

Maximum amount allowed in water

20 μg/L

What is it?

Alachlor is an odorless white solid. 

What are its uses?

Alachlor is mainly used as a herbicide in agriculture. It is mainly used to curtail the growth of grasses and weeds in crops.  It is primarily used on fields trying to grow corn, sorghum, and soybeans.

How does it get into drinking water?

The main way in which Alachlor gets into drinking water is through runoff as the substance is often sprayed on row crops. Either from careless spraying or leaching from periods of heavy rainfall it may find its way into surface water sources.

What are the health effects of consuming an exceedance?

Drinking water which contains an exceedance of Alachlor in the long term puts the individual at risk of  problems with their eyes, liver, kidneys, or spleen, and may experience anaemia. They may also be at  increased risk of getting cancer.


How do I know if it is in my water?

The best way is to get your water tested from an accredited laboratory.  You can purchase a test which tests for herbicides and pesticides here.

How do I remove it from my Water?  

To get the levels of Alachlor below the maximum exceedance level, treatments of the water with a granular activated carbon filter.

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