in Uncategorized

Water contaminents

Human/Animal Sources

  • Excrement
  • Areas with poor sanitation


Nitrogen – amonia -> Nitrate

health concern: methemoglobinemia (Blue Baby Syndrome)


Algal blooms; diurnal cycle leading to effects including fish death.

Example sources of phosphorus: detergent (tripolyphosphate)

Non-point sources

Sources of containments that are spread out across the landscape. E.g. agriculture.

Toxic organic compounds

PCB – Polychlorinated Biphenyls

  • used as insulators
  • low potential for combustion
  • potential carcenogens


DDT – dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane

  • Effective at killing mosquitos
  • Prevented spread of malaria, saving countless lives
  • Affects bird reproduction
  • Rachel Carson – Silent Spring documents effects of DDT/organic chemicals on ecosystems

Chlorinated solvents

PCE – Tetrachloroethylene

  • Carcenogenic
  • Impacted water supply
    • Movie: Civil Action featuring John Travolta


  • Have health benefits
  • Emerge from body potentially un-altered
  • Flow through sewage treatment systems into environment

Heavy Metals

Metal Plating

Protects surface of metals, extending usefulness. Can find way into environment.





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