Water purification is the process of treating contaminated water to remove unwanted foreign matter including chemicals, particulates, suspended solids and biological contamination. There are many different processes available to accomplish this task and they are varied in their methods. One of the largest challenges presented is identifying the contaminants present in the water, by identifying the contaminant we are then able to apply the method that is best suited to remove or reduce that particular threat. Water purification has been around for centuries and the methods employed have changed greatly over the years as technology and our understanding of the how different contaminants impact the lives of those who not only drink the water but use it for many different reasons including, chemical, industrial and medical applications.
We often times take for granted the standards set by international, national and local governments. These standards identify threats to human health and then establish the maximum amount of specific contaminants that should be present in a water supply system in order to insure that our health is not negatively affected. Countless hours of research and centuries of experience go into establishing these standards. Having these standards in place afford the population affected the benefit of avoiding disease and sickness associated with consuming water that contains harmful contaminants including bacteria, viruses and chemicals. According to the World Health Organization contaminated drinking water and food sources kills 1.5 million children annually, mainly attributed to diarrhea. These deaths occur mainly in developing countries and could be prevented by having standards and a method of purifying water in order to meet them.
International Drinking Water Standards
In the United States we have a very good system in place and generally speaking we can drink municipal water without the worry of becoming ill. There are cases of illness and even death but are usually identified and isolated early. One concern is when for some unforeseen reason the process of municipal purification is disrupted because of disaster such as earthquakes, hurricanes and flooding. These natural disasters often interrupt the supply of safe drinking water and leave the people affected to fend for themselves. The health of these people depends on them being educated on the possible dangers present in their supply of drinking water and some simple method of purifying that water in order to be able to safely drink it. We would like to be a part of that education process and present you with the knowledge of what water purification is and how it affects the water that is around you.