America's Solution For Clean Drinking WaterSource: Calgon Carbon Corporation
Potable drinking water may contain organic materials, such as decaying plants, often referred to as Naturally Occurring Matter (NOM). Organics can also be formed as by-products of industrial chemicals to form DBPs or newly discovered chemical compounds, referred to as emerging contaminants.
The use of alternative chemical disinfectants is often considered an easily implemented and inexpensive means of reducing DBPs, such as trihalomethanes (TTHMs) and haloacetic acids (HAA5), formed by chlorine addition. However, the implementation of alternative disinfectants, such as chloramines, raises additional concerns, including water system nitrification, elastomer (gasket materials) decay, and required retreatment steps for fish culture and dialysis patients. Problems with bacterial regrowth can also arise in plumbing systems after chloramines decay and form free ammonia.
There are further concerns about the use of alternative disinfectants. Most worrisome is the creation of newly identified by-products, known as emerging DPBs, which may pose their own health risks and ultimately prove to show greater toxicity than the originally targeted DBPs.