E. Coli. Klebsiella pneumoniae. Enterobacter. These, and many more nasties, are the types of bacteria that hang out in drinking water. That’s why it’s essential to have some type of water treatment plan before drinking your water or using it in food production.
What does it take to have a functioning water treatment process? Not as much as you might think – but still, many communities struggle to have clean water.
What Makes Water Unsafe?
Drinking water typically comes from three sources. These are groundwater pulled up in a well, flowing water like a river, or treated water from a wastewater plant.
Each of these sources is potentially contaminated by bacteria, viruses, protozoa, and pollution.
Groundwater wells can be easily contaminated in several ways. Nearby chemical spills may soak through the dirt. An animal may die in the well and spread bacteria and viruses.
Chemical dumping upstream contaminants flowing water sources. This can be an extremely dangerous situation in the developing world. Restrictions are less stringent, and the ability to test water unavailable.
Treated water is water that has gone through wastewater treatment. It is cycled through as clean drinking water. This has perhaps some of the scarier implications for drinking water.
To ensure effective treatment of wastewater, rigorous processes and standards are in place. These bring the water back to safe-to-consume levels.
Wastewater may be from street drains or toilets. It can be significantly contaminated with pesticides, human waste, animal waste, and chemicals picked up from the ground in runoff.
Many wastewater sources can be properly recycled to only contain clean water that is safe to drink, shower in, and use for public water. Governmental regulations are set to determine the rigorous process that makes it safe for consumption.
Run through a series of filters that remove smaller and smaller contaminants in the water. Water is ultimately treated with chlorine for disinfection. It goes back to the environment or is piped back to homes.
Benefits of Water Treatment
The benefits of water treatment mean safe drinking water. In areas where water treatment is used to safely recycle water from wastewater, this can prevent water shortages and help cope with drought.
In the food and beverage industry, water treatment is an essential step in creating safe, consumable food. Water treatment may be used in combination with a blending system or juice production line.
Water Treatment Makes Water Potable
From your tap water from a ground well to your industrial water system in a food factory, water treatment makes water potable. It is an essential element to providing access to safe water for humans around the globe, especially those in developing nations.
Learn more about water treatment benefits and access to safe water in our other articles.