Protesters rally outside Anchorage City Hall to commemorate the victims of a 20-year-old fluoride accident in Hooper Bay.
In 1992, a large amount of fluoride leaked into the Hooper Bay water system and the water systems in surrounding communities. The incident left nearly 300 people sick.
Protesters outside City Hall say they’re hoping to catch Mayor Dan Sullivan or the assembly’s attention to hopefully get rid of fluoride in Anchorage’s water supply.
“It’s really unsafe to have this highly toxic compound put into our water supply,” said Jason Agre, a fluoride protester. Agre says the only benefit of fluoride can be taken care of in a dentist trip, and argues that too much of it can be life threatening. The group says the Anchorage water system is poisoning its citizens and violating human rights.
Fluoride was removed from Juneau, Fairbanks and Palmer’s water supply, however, it is still in Municipality of Anchorage’s water supply.
The Environmental Protection Agency and the Centers for Disease Control say the fluoride doze of 0.7 milligrams per liter that is in Anchorage’s tap water is harmless.
“That appears to be a level that’s sufficient to provide the health benefits and not so severe as to provide any less then beneficial affects to harm us,” said Brett Jokela, assistant general manager with Water and Wastewater Utility.
The Anchorage Assembly says the fluoride in the water is good for oral hygiene, officials with Water and Wastewater Utility says the right amount of fluoride hardens the enamel of the teeth discouraging the decay process from taking place.