City of Calgary, Canada removes fluoride from drinking water

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Thursday, February 10, 2011

Fluoride is added to drinking water in many regions in order to help prevent tooth decay.
Image: Jenny Downing.

Calgary city council voted 10 to 3 on Wednesday to stop fluoridating their water supply. This overturns a previous plebiscite from 1989 to add the fluoride in an attempt to reduce tooth decay.

Opponents of water fluoridation claim that there could be unknown health effects of fluoride, and question its effectiveness in preventing tooth decay. They also claim that individuals should be able to decide for themselves whether or not to use fluoride. However, Alberta Health Services maintains that current evidence shows that fluoride is both safe, and beneficial to dental health.

It is estimated that no longer fluoridating the water supply could save Calgary's city council C$750 thousand (550 thousand) annually, as well as cutting a C$6 million (4.3 million) upgrade to the fluoridation system.


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