Ways to Clean Groundwater under Direct Influence of Surface Water

Even though you may not have heard of it, the bowel infection giardiasis infects more than 2.5 million people in the United States every year. In undeveloped countries, it can affect as much as 20-30% of the population. The reason it’s so prevalent is that it is caused by a protozoan parasite that infiltrates water systems everywhere on the globe. If these protozoans infect your system, you will begin feeling very sick. Therefore, it’s vital for municipal water systems to keep strict safeguards on groundwater under the direct influence of surface water in order to decrease protozoan populations and maintain public health.

Groundwater is called under the influence of surface water if there is a defineable connection between the two. Groundwater includes private water sources and underground springs. Surface water is more subject to contaminants which, if a direct link exists, can pass through to the groundwater. Water treatment facilities have to be able to identify the source of the parasites so that they can eliminate the problem where it begins. Since surface water can feed into many underground water reserves, the problem of giardiasis can spread in a hurry unless the source is located and given treatment.

As per the Surface Water Treatment Rule established in 1989, the established tolerance for Giardia and other common parasites in drinking water is zero. That is because these parasites present a health risk to the public. This rule also set up the guidelines for the techniques that have to be used to eliminate the contaminants and established the requirements that drinking water which is entering the distribution system must have constant disinfection and a measure of disinfectant in the system that can be detected.

The Federal government requires that all groundwater under the influence of surface water undergo a three-step process in order to determine the degree of contamination. These steps are:
1. Testing in order to establish the quality of the water and the types of contaminants that
are in it.
2. Keeping track of it daily for the long-term.
3. Follow-up checks for water quality.

The Department of Health insists that water systems using contaminated groundwater under the direct influence of surface water must take additional measures it has outlined in order to eliminate the problems. The water treatment system may be forced to filter or sanitize all of its water and that the facility has to be run by licensed employees. The guidelines seem to be working in almost all of the areas, too. Unfortunately, some Giardia and other parasites are still managing to get through the systems that are in place. This is not acceptable, and water management will continue to be checked until the zero tolerance set forth by the rule is an actuality.

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