Water pollution is one of the major concerns in urban areas. The harmful effects of water pollution are visible today in various forms whether it is the shortage of potable water or the spread of water borne diseases. Pollution mainly occurs due to release of untreated industrial effluents and sewage in water bodies as well as due to accidents like oil slicks. Another kind of pollution is due to stagnant water which poses a health hazard from contamination and proliferation of diseases.
Regulatory bodies and rules
In most countries around the world government bodies have laid down rules and regulations to curb water pollution. In the U.S the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) is a federal program that seeks to control water pollution by regulating sources that discharge pollutants. Any activity that involves discharge of wastes in water bodies requires a permit from the NPDES. A stringent evaluation, treatment and monitoring program are required to avail of an NPDES permit.
An example highlighting the need for water treatment
Construction sites need to drain water accumulated due to storms and rains on a regular basis. A major source of pollution, construction sites need to perform dewatering and groundwater control especially if the activity is carried out in low lying areas. Most sites let off excess water into sewers however in some areas it is not permissible to discharge ground water unless in-depth treatment processes are initiated.
Storm water management
Another important factor is surface water accumulated due to storms and rains in depressions and sinkholes. A properly designed treatment system is required to get a Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) permit. The SWPP permit as it is known is a mandatory requirement for constructions sites to deal with storm water accumulation issues.
Major industries that make use of dewatering and water treatment units are
- Environmental solutions for residential and industrial purpose
The requirement for water treatment is often varied. Infrastructure includes dewatering equipment, water analysis tools, large scale holding tanks and of course in-depth planning. A complete dewatering and water treatment system will include different types of filters like sand filters, bag filters, cartridge filters, activated carbon mesh filters, oil/water separators, pipes, hoses, meters and pumps.
Water treatment is a continuous process and therefore needs to be monitored regularly. Quality reports help to determine if the process functions at the effective level. For example groundwater sampling provides data regarding the water quality and whether it's fit for use.
Water treatment and dewatering is a major industry today and has contributed greatly to reducing the menace of water pollution. The practices put in place by the industry have become commonplace in most countries around the world. A number of states in the U.S have established standards to not only control pollution but also make optimum use of excess water.