This is a question that has begun to resurface in recent years. With crises like that of Flint, Michigan, people are worried their water might not actually be as safe to drink as they thought. Truth be told, it’s not. However, measures can be taken in order to remedy drinking water issues.
A Case for Potable Water Geomembranes
To purify water, water treatment facilities need to ensure that the water passing through the systems receives adequate exposure to the proper levels of chlorine. One way to do this is through the use of geomembranes. Outlined below are four ways in which geomembranes can be used to help tackle the drinking water crisis.
1. Curtains and Baffles
Potable Water (PW) geomembranes can be used to make curtains or baffles for potable water tanks. The chlorination process that takes place in these tanks is designed to kill any bacteria, viruses, and algae before exposure to humans. Essentially, the addition of these curtains and baffles can prolong the contact the water has with the chlorine. Once properly treated, the water is then passed through an outlet pipe.
2. Tank and Pond Liner
As tanks that hold drinking water age, they can suffer from cracks and a number of other deficiencies that can lead to contamination. PW geomembranes can be installed as liners in these tanks in order to help minimize the waters contact with unsanitary conditions. PW geomembranes can also be used in ponds and reservoirs in order to prevent the loss of potentially hundreds or thousands of gallons of treated water monthly.
3. Floating Covers
Raw water reservoirs tend to leave water susceptible to a variety of contaminants, such as pollen, airborne particles, animal droppings, dead animals, etc. However, a floating cover made of PW geomembrane can protect this valuable water supply. The following are some benefits associated with geomembrane floating covers:
- Prevent evaporation
- Prevent algae growth
- Reduce need for water treatment chemicals
- Prevent production of trihalomethane (THM) type compounds
4. Drinking Water Bladders
Portable containment vessels or ‘bladders’ can be created from PW geomembranes. These vessels have multiple functions, such as distributing emergency water in remote locations or making clean drinking water generally more accessible. Filtration systems installed within the vessels allow contaminated water to be processed and transformed into clean drinking water. These bladders come in sizes ranging anywhere from five gallons to a hundred thousand gallons.
While the use of geomembranes alone cannot completely solve the world’s water problems, increased usage could be an easy place to start. What do you think about the use of geomembranes in order to help keep water clean? Share your thoughts in the comments.