Sources Of Contamination
The list of Who''s in the “Who done it” of drinking water contamination category is a long one. To better understand why this list is so long read about the various types and sources of water pollution below.
SOURCES OF WATER POLLUTION ARE DIVIDED INTO TWO MAJOR CATEGORIES:
- Point Source Water Contamination: This category involves the introduction of a contaminant directly into the water source from its direct source. For example a factory may dump contaminated water directly into a river for disposal.
- Non-Point Source Water Contamination: This category involves the introduction of a contaminant indirectly into a water source. An example would be pesticides from a field being carried off the field and into a river or leaching down into an aquifer.
TYPES OF POINT SOURCE POLLUTION:
Chemical and industrial pollution:Industries of all sizes contribute to the pollution of all types of water resources. It is estimated that each year, 34 BILLION LITERS of hazardous liquid waste is injected into the deep groundwater. Injection wells are one of the means industry uses to diminish the local and immediate consequences of their pollutants. I don''t even want to think of the long-term consequences of that bright idea. Evidence already suggests that groundwater supplies in Florida, Texas, Oklahoma and Ohio have been compromised by these same pollutant migrating from deep water aquifers. In India, the Central Pollution Board found groundwater unfit for drinking in all 22 industrial zones studied.
Sewage:We all contribute to a greater or lesser degree to this type of pollutant, “regularly,” if we are lucky. The methods used to get sewage out of sight can cause problems. Many sewage treatment facilities are simply not able to cope with the increased populations that they serve. Many treatment facilities are old and in disrepair. The result of facilities failing or being overtaxed is the spillage of raw sewage directly into a water resource. It is estimated that over 850 BILLION gallons of raw sewage entered rivers, lakes and streams annually. While not always a drinking water problem, evidence suggests that sewage spillage is a prevalent and serious threat. The number of beach closures in any summer, both ocean and fresh water lakes and rivers are increasing, as their waters are found unsafe for human contact. In developing countries this problem is even more severe. 90% of wastewater in these countries empties directly untreated into rivers, streams or the ocean. The high incidence of water-borne disease is just one standard that can be used to measure the consequences.
Fuels and Oils: Spillage and leakage of fuels, oils and additives, especially gas is an increasing concern as fuel storage tanks leak into the ground and groundwater. It is estimated by the EPA that there are over 100,000 leaking fuel tanks in the US. The US Coast Guard has a program to encourage the reporting of the spilling of contaminants into the water -
In Santa Monica more than half the local wells were shut down due to water contamination of a gas additive called MTBE.
TYPES OF NON-POINT SOURCE POLLUTION
Pesticides: Pesticides are used throughout the world as a means of increasing crop production. They poison and kill insects by the trillions. These same pesticides are, unfortunately, also turning up in our groundwater and becoming part of our diet. Hopefully the effect will be less impressive on us than on the insects. The pesticides are washed off plants and soil by rain and carried into water systems. Some of these pesticides make their way to our groundwater supplies and from there into our homes.
Fertilizers: Chemical fertilizers carry the same risks as the pesticides but are less directly harmful to us. They negatively effect the water sheds which become infested with algae and aquatic plants. The plant proliferate as a direct result of the high nutrient content in the water. Ultimately their death and decay result in water that is diminished in oxygen and devoid of much life. Water contamination is not just an issue for humans. Many types of plants and animals suffer as the result.
The Environmental Defense Fund is an excellent source of information. Read this article to give you a better idea how serious this problem is in the USA.
WATER CONTAMINATION IS FACT OF LIFE.
Make certain that the water you drink is safe and clean to drink by using a filtering device of high quality and good reliability. If you have a whole house filter, we recommend that you keep a backup system that does not require electricity or water pressure - a high quality gravity water filter system that will make water safe for drinking from any source, such as a pool, a pond, a lake or a stream.
THE WATER YOU DRINK MAY NOT BE AS SAFE AS YOU THINK.
We have found that the most efficient, cost effective, low maintenance, longest lasting system of water treatment is a gravity fed water purification system.. It is what we use and recommend for you and our loved ones.
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