Water is a main component of all living creatures. There are more than 96 thousands of living organisms in the world. All of them tend to consume water in order to maintain their functionality on a high level. Humans are not exceptions. It is impossible to imagine life without regular water consumption. However, modern world suffers from the lack of clear water. It is one of the biggest problems of the modern society, calling for the immediate solutions. Many countries face a problem of unsafe water. Therefore, there is a need to pay a great attention to the water quality and supplying.
California is one of the states, suffering from the low quality of water. It is an obvious fact that there are many ways of water pollution. For instance, one of them is the contaminants of emerging concern (CEC). CECs are a various group of chemicals, difficult or impossible to monitor and analyze. To a great extent, it is a formidable task to control the amount of the CECs in the water and develop ways of their prevention. In addition, very often, it is difficult to predict their influence on the beneficial characteristics of fresh water. In any case, one can assume that CECs pose danger to the health and well-being of humans. Therefore, their amount in water should be maximally reduced.
One of the main problems of California’s water supplies consists in the existence of a great amount of pesticides, personal care products, and industrial compounds. All these substances negatively influence the quality of water, making it unsuitable for consumption. The main reason of their appearance in water consists in their frequency of use in the daily life (Kidd et al., 2007). Thus, it becomes obvious that it is impossible to avoid CECs as they form an essential part of the daily routine. At the same time, some steps should be taken toward their reduction in drinking water. One of them is the emergence of scientific studies, investigating the problem of CECs in water (Benotti, Trenholm, Vanderford, Holady, Stanford, & Snyder, 2009).
According to the recent studies, approximately 100 thousands of different chemical substances have been found in the California’s water supplies during the last 30 years. Among those chemicals, a great role belongs to toxic substances, food additives, cosmetic and pharmaceutical components (Chart 1). According to Wilson and Schwarzman (2009), 27 trillion pounds of chemical substances were spread all over the United States between 2002 and 2005. Moreover, these researchers believe the amount to increase as the general production of chemicals is going to grow worldwide. Thus, one can assume that the development of the technological and scientific progress results in some negative side effects as well. Although, the chemical industries are important for humans, they pose a certain threat to their health and well-being. Pollution of water is one of the main drawbacks of the fast pace of the technological development.
However, existence of chemicals is not the only problem of water quality in California. The other trouble consists in the inability to investigate these chemicals and reveal their negative impacts. The lack of information makes it impossible to develop strategies for the CECs reduction.
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In fact, restoration of the water clearness is a complicated and long-lasting process. It is impossible to prevent all the CECs in a short period. However, it is important to start with some small concrete steps rather than with big, but insupportable conversations. Considering the situation with California, water cleaning is fulfilled in a following way.
In addition, the other solution for the water problems consists in the necessity to establish indicator compounds and surrogate parameters. The practice shows that they are quite effective and can help to reduce costs and complexity. In the majority of cases, measuring indicators and surrogates are the only possible alternative ways for CECs when no analytical methods and measures are available. The concept of indicators means special compounds acting similarly to the current target CECs from the point of view of their complexity and behavior in the natural systems. For instance, the anxiolytic meprobamate can be used as an indicator of pharmaceutical substances in the process of treatment (Dickenson, Drewes, Sedlak, Wert, & Snyder, 2009). The notion of surrogates means quantitative parameters that deal with the specific CECs and identify the degree of treatment or removal inside a system. For instance, ultraviolet absorbance (UVA) is a brilliant example of the surrogates, which helps to reveal the behavior of total organic carbon (TOC) and oxidation byproduct formation.
Furthermore, the reduction of CECs in water supplies is possible, according to the measurement of their quantities. As it has been already mentioned, many researchers neglect the amounts of less dangerous substances. However, it is significant to focus on every type of chemical substances in order to eliminate their quantities in drinking water. In order to complete this task, one should apply the analytical means and tools, including physical, biological, chemical measurement techniques. According to them, it is possible to identify the amount of CECs in the water and provide some ways for their reduction. Therefore, existence of a solid analytical basis is the other way to success in case with the water problems.
Additionally, the problem with CECs can be solved only in case of cooperation between different organizations and agencies. Everyone needs to take part in solving of this problem. Only collaborative efforts can help to avoid CECs in the drinking water. With this purpose, it is possible to organize special trainings and meetings in order to inform the population about the necessity to protect water and prevent emergence of CECs. Various agencies and companies should launch monitoring programs in order to control the quality of water. Finally, there is a need to establish a strong system of communication for the sake of solving the problem with CECs.
Finally, the program aiming at the CECs reduction should be flexible and adaptive to changes. Obviously, the amount and characteristics of chemical substances in water tend to change. Therefore, the practical application of the solutions should be ready to react on time and adapt to new conditions. For instance, different means should be appropriate for usage in different settings.
In other words, the solution for water drinking issues in California demands plenty of time and efforts. It is impossible to achieve a good result quickly. On the contrary, the combination of theoretical background with the practical implementation, as well as collaboration between different organizations can help to gain a desirable result.
To sum up, modern world suffers from the problem of water pollution. This problem is typical and actual for many places and cities. One of them is California. It faces many problems with the quality of water. The emergence of contaminant in the water is one of the biggest issues. As a result, the local government should think over the implementation of right solutions for this problem. In any case, it is important to realize that protection of the high quality of drinking water is not an easy task. It calls for plenty of efforts, time, and costs.
Therefore, we can conclude that the reduction of CECs is a complicated and continuous process, which involves many separate steps and actions. Only collaborative efforts and relevant researches can help to solve this problem in a proper way.