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Water decontamination: what it is and methods

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), among the main primary activities that pollute the planet’s water are industrial agriculture and livestock, which uncontrollably dump pollutants that are very harmful to water quality, as nitrates and phosphates. In different corners of the planet, more and more ground and surface waters are being contaminated by waste from human activities, so finding solutions for water pollution is one of the main strategies worldwide to continue doing so. use of this precious commodity.

If you want to delve into this topic, in this AgroCorrn article you will find detailed information about what is water decontamination, methods and importance .

You may also be interested in: How water is polluted
Index
  1. What is water decontamination – definition
  2. Water decontamination methods
  3. Decontamination of water with aquatic plants
  4. Decontamination of water with bacteria
  5. Decontamination of water with microorganisms
  6. Decontamination of water with solar energy
  7. Why is water decontamination important?

What is water decontamination – definition

Water decontamination includes all those methodologies and strategies that make it possible to purify water that shows signs of different types of contamination, with the aim of turning it into a usable resource for different uses. Thus, water decontamination systems are essential for the optimal and effective reuse of this natural resource that is increasingly scarce and associated with dangers.

In the next sections we will see which are the most used methods to decontaminate water, making special reference to those that use ecological alternatives to the decontamination of wastewater, thus avoiding the use of artificial chemical decontaminating processes, which entail associated environmental damage.

In addition, we recommend you read these other articles on the Causes and consequences of water pollution and How to avoid water pollution .

Water decontamination methods

The techniques of water purification are becoming more sophisticated and modern, within which we find different alternatives depending on the type of industry and the use of waters that have been contaminated. Thus, among the main solutions for water pollution we can find:

  • Decontamination of water with aquatic plants.
  • Decontamination of water with bacteria.
  • Decontamination of water with microorganisms.
  • Decontamination of water with solar energy.

Decontamination of water with aquatic plants

The use of aquatic plants or algae for the decontamination of water is a technique characterized by its high performance and ecological methodology, that is, it is devoid of polluting chemicals.

Through the so-called ” consortia of algae and bacteria “, certain species of aquatic plants interact through symbiosis with specific bacteria, being able, as a whole, to eliminate pollutants from water through bioremediation processes. Complementing themselves for the exchange of carbon and nitrogen, as well as for the uptake of nutrients, they ensure their joint survival in environments where they would not be able to survive individually, while generating indirect benefits: the decontamination of water and the generation biomass , later used as raw material to produce biofertilizers.

Decontamination of water with bacteria

In addition to their role in the formation of consortia with algae that we have seen in the previous section, bacteria contribute decisively with their metabolic activities to maintaining the biogeochemical cycles of water. They are capable of removing nitrates and phosphates, as well as hardly biodegradable chemicals, such as pesticides and hydrocarbons.

The water decontamination techniques used by bacteria are based on the accumulation of intracellular deposits of compounds and chemicals that, being insoluble, cause serious contamination of natural water resources, as well as diseases in humans, animals and plants.

A clear example of the role that bacteria play in water decontamination is that of bacteria capable of degrading hydrocarbons found in oil, this being the main source of contamination of water by hydrocarbons in the biosphere.

Decontamination of water with microorganisms

Different groups of aerobic and anaerobic microorganisms are commonly used in biological reactors and water decontamination stations.

Thanks to their ability to remove nitrogen and phosphorus from water, microorganisms are one of the most widely used biological water decontamination treatments . They generally favor the elimination of chemical compounds and elements through the formation of sludge, which are subsequently treated and purified in sewage treatment plants using biodegradable decontamination treatments.

Decontamination of water with solar energy

Among the most sophisticated and innovative techniques for decontamination of water , the use of solar energy appears. By applying photocatalysis processes based on the use of sunlight , it is possible to treat, decontaminate and even reuse contaminated water.

These contaminated waters are usually industrial waste waters , to which the application of radiation with germicidal use is useful, that is, capable of inhibiting the reproduction of organisms responsible for water pollution.

Why is water decontamination important?

The decontamination of water is currently included as one of the fundamental measures to guarantee the availability and use of drinking water on a global scale. Numerous and diverse problems, such as people’s health, the lack of fertile soils for cultivation and the contamination of natural water resources, are potentially harmful if they do not have adequate treatment and decontamination strategies.

In this way, it is important to take into account both those strategies focused on how to avoid water pollution (based on the conservation and protection of natural water resources as a source of water supply), as well as those other strategies related to water pollution. decontamination of water, involving both physical, chemical and biological processes, depending on the factor causing said contamination.

Finally, we invite you to read this other article on Solutions to water pollution and watch this video about it.

If you want to read more articles similar to Water decontamination: what it is and methods , we recommend that you enter our Pollution category .

Hello, I am a blogger specialized in environmental, health and scientific dissemination issues in general. The best way to define myself as a blogger is by reading my texts, so I encourage you to do so. Above all, if you are interested in staying up to date and reflecting on these issues, both on a practical and informative level.

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