Water covers around 71 % of the earth's surface, with the oceans containing approximately 96.5 %. However, as the poem's famous words go, "water water everywhere, not one drop to drink." Yes! It is a universal truth in many parts of the world. According to UNICEF, almost two-thirds of the world’s population i.e., around 4 billion people experience severe water scarcity for at least one month each year.
Water Conservation consists of limiting water consumption and eliminating water waste. Water conservation saves energy, the environment, and our ecology by maintaining our wetlands alive with aquatic life. Overall, it contributes to lowering our carbon impact.
Water recycling is the reclamation of water from various sources, followed by filtering and chemical treatment before reusing it for beneficial purposes such as agriculture and irrigation, potable water supplies, groundwater replenishment, industrial activities, and environmental restoration. By the end of 2024, it is predicted that the water-operating expenses for metals and mining companies are projected to grow by 1 to 5 percent CAGR. Water reuse may offer alternatives to the current water supply and help with demand management. It improves water security, long-term viability, and resilience while removing the need for water transportation.
To supply safe drinking water to their communities, public drinking water systems employ a variety of water treatment technologies and alternatives in the water storage system. Some water sources may carry poisons or particular compounds (such as nitrates). Specialized methods to control or remove these contaminants are also part of water treatment. States, tribes, and local governments, according to the EPA, execute programs under the Safe Drinking Water Act and the Clean Water Act to preserve the quality and community of drinking water, and water bodies in the form of lakes and rivers. Similarly, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) gives water treatment standards and stages. These are the following:-
Water must be treated with particular chemicals in order to be fit and safe for use, that is, to be clean and free of any bacteria, parasites, or viruses. These chemicals might range from specific types of salts to naturally occurring components as-For Coagulation- salts of aluminum, iron, etc. such as aluminum sulfate, sodium aluminate, ferric sulfate, and ferric chloride
In order to ensure safety, water treatment chemicals must be used in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions and guidelines. They may create health problems if not handled or utilized carefully, especially if breathed or come into close touch with skin. When exposed to large amounts of these, the consequences can be serious. Chlorine, which is widely employed as a disinfectant in water treatment operations to kill bacteria and other organisms, has harmful side effects. It can produce rashes, itching, redness, and irritation on the skin. Similarly, if treated carelessly, aluminum sulfate and fluoride can have negative health consequences. Toxic compounds included in some water treatment chemicals might cause bladder cancer or other health problems. Every year, nearly 16,000 women and 54,000 men get bladder cancer in the United States.
Water is necessary for every human for their survival. Basically, it is used in each and every basic activity such as bathing, cleaning, washing, cooking, and others. Additionally, the water is used in agriculture, industries, generating hydroelectricity, and poultry. Therefore, using it efficiently and effectively is the need of the time. There are two processes that can help in maintaining the water ecosystem such as reclamation and recycling. Chemicals are utilized in different steps of the water treatment process. Moreover, water treatment plants can be used as an extra or replacement step for chemicals that also help in disinfecting water using ultraviolet light, ozone, and reverse osmosis. These disinfection methods are not able to kill germs as water travels with the help of pipes between the plants and the tap. The water may get contaminated while transporting. Hence, chemicals for disinfecting water is preferred.