Aurora Magazine

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An answer to Pakistan’s water woes?

Updated Jan 17, 2019 11:23am
Can LifeStraw’s innovative products be the answer to Pakistan’s water filtration needs?

Having just stepped into 2019, the Pakistani market is all ready and eager to welcome new and advanced filtration technologies that experiment and enhance methods of maintaining health and hygiene, particularly water.

Due to industrialisation, agricultural activities and urbanisation, Pakistan has been faced with countless diseases caused by waterborne pathogenic microorganisms; in severe cases these are believed to be life-threatening. The most common examples of waterborne diseases are typhoid, Hepatitis A and E, and cholera, and they often diagnosed by the help of their primary symptom: diarrhoea.

Companion is introducing Pakistan to a range of point-of-use water filtration products, which aim to filter bacteria and contaminants to make water safe for human consumption which have been manufactured by LifeStraw, a Swiss company. Their products treat water using hollow fibre membranes with a pore size of 0.2 microns, to rid it of pathogens, including bacteria and protozoa, and reduce water turbidity. The pore size of 0.2 microns enables microfiltration of water that passes through. The products have been designed specifically for routine use and have, in the past, gained popularity in low income regions all around the world.

There are 4 distinct products that follow LifeStraw’s filtration system and hold different quantities of water for routine use.

LifeStraw Personal traps dirt, bacteria or parasites in its network of fibres
LifeStraw Personal traps dirt, bacteria or parasites in its network of fibres

LifeStraw Personal

LifeStraw Personal is a product that traps dirt, bacteria or parasites in its network of fibres, letting clean water through. Once water has been filtered of all bacteria and passed through, the straw filter can be cleared by blowing air right through it.

The Straw functions without any chemical or electric filtration mechanisms, which is why it is gaining popularity all around the world. The product has the ability of cleaning about 1000 litres of water.

A couple of LifeStraw products use a two-stage filtration process; in addition to the hollow fiber membrane, a carbon capsule absorbs chemicals like chlorine and pesticides. Here’s a quick demonstration of how the product filters pollutants out of water:

LifeStraw Go has an advanced dual stage water filtration bottle which protects water against harmful contaminants
LifeStraw Go has an advanced dual stage water filtration bottle which protects water against harmful contaminants

LifeStraw Go

Taking LifeStraw’s mechanism one step ahead, LifeStraw Go offers an advanced dual stage water filtration bottle that aims to protect water against harmful contaminants such as bacteria, parasites and microplastics. The product is also able to rid water of chlorine, thus maintaining and improving its natural taste. The bottle is BPA free which makes it a reliable partner for hiking, camping, travel and emergencies. Water picked from all sorts of sources, including streams, taps, rivers, can be filtered on the go in few seconds.

The Lifestraw Flex soft bottle is are equipped with advanced    technologies that allow the filtration of lead and heavy metals
The Lifestraw Flex soft bottle is are equipped with advanced technologies that allow the filtration of lead and heavy metals
The Community product can hold up to 25,000 gallons of water
The Community product can hold up to 25,000 gallons of water

Other variants

Products hosting similar filtration techniques for larger quantities of water are also part of the LifeStraw family. These include LifeStraw Flex with a gravity bag and LifeStraw community.

The Gravity Bag is designed to hold one gallon of water and is equipped with carbon fibre filters. The Community product, on the other hand, holds up to 25,000 gallons of water and has the ability to serve about 100 people for three to five years. Products like Lifestraw Flex soft bottle and gravity bag are equipped with advanced technologies that allow the filtration of lead and other heavy metals as well.

How safe is the product?

LifeStraw has gained popularity all across the world and won awards that include IPSO Award for LifeStraw® and Saatchi & Saatchi Award for World Changing Ideas 2008 among others.