Clean water is, simply put, one of the essentials for life. Without clean water, we would not have anything to drink. We wouldn’t be able to wash our clothes, bathe properly, or avoid disease as effectively. Dirty water can host a number of dangerous bacteria, and clean water helps to maintain a clean environment overall. In places without easy access to clean water, life is less certain. That’s why dirty water treatment is so crucial. Dirty water treatment can help to eliminate the contaminants in dirty water and, therefore, the threat it poses to humans as well as, often, the environment as well.
Though clean, fresh water seems to be all around us, fresh water actually makes up only 3% of the Earth’s total water. So much of it is saltwater that, although it has its uses and is certainly important, is considerably less usable to us than fresh water. And of that 3% of fresh water, only a sliver – 1% in total – is actually suitable and safe for drinking. Dirty water treatment helps to make more of that small percentage of fresh water safe and usable. But, unfortunately for people and the environment alike, up to 70% of industrial waste is dumped into what becomes industrial wastewater, turning it into heavily polluted water and making it unusable. This is, of course, a disaster for the environment as well, as it often makes the water uninhabitable to the life that would usually thrive there, from fish to amphibians to plant life.
Ground water is an important part of accessible fresh water, as it makes up an astonishing 95% of the freshwater that is available and is actually the drinking water for half or more of people in the United States alone. But groundwater pollution is a serious issue. The vast majority of hazardous waste sites in the United States – over 80% – have been shown to negatively impact the quality of the nearby groundwater. This shows clearly the necessity of hazardous waste management as well as effective dirty water treatment.
Chemical spills are also an all too common issue that almost always leads to the need for dirty water treatment. Every single year, 16,000 chemical spills happen in the United States, polluting water, harming people, and harming wildlife in the process. These chemical spills often require severe intervention, part of which involves dirty water treatment.
Everyone deserves access to clean, safe water for drinking and other uses, but all too often that is threatened by environmental hazards such as oil spills and factory waste. Fortunately, dirty water treatment can help to preserve and fix the quality of some sources of water, making it safe again for public consumption.