Biofilms and Drinking Water Quality

The ability of microorganisms to attach to diverse surfaces and form complex colonies known as biofilms vastly improves their survival and growth in environmental niches. Biofilms form when bacteria adhere to surfaces by excreting a slimy, glue-like substance, and can include algae, protozoa, and other microorganisms. Nationally, biofilms cost the US billions of dollars every

Meeting the Goal of Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation for All

Reliable and safe drinking water and sanitation are fundamental requirements of people trying to reach their greatest potential in life. Few of us can relate to the burden and indignity of living without these basic services. Achieving universal access to safely managed drinking water and sanitation services is one of the 17 Post-2015 Sustainable Development

The Global Water Pathogen Project: Helping to Meet the UN Post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals

As nations work to meet the 17 post-2015 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), there is a significant new resource that will help “ensure the availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all,” the focus of SDG #6.   That resource is the Global Water Pathogen Project (GWPP), the largest single coordinated effort of

Legionella in Flint’s Drinking Water

Much has been written about Flint, Michigan’s lead-contaminated drinking water, but we should not overlook another health risk associated with Flint in the recent past, and that is the possibility of Legionella bacteria in the city’s drinking water.  The unchecked corrosivity of Flint’s drinking water may have led to more than one serious water quality

Water Experts Use Technology to Promote Safe Water and Sanitation

Controlling human exposure to waterborne pathogens associated with fecal waste is a key factor in attaining the goal of safe drinking water and sanitation for all, (Sustainable Development Goal #6 in the 2030 United Nations Agenda).  What does it take to make significant strides toward that lofty goal?  Try a group of nine international scientific

Do Point-of-Use Water Quality Interventions Work?

In many regions of the developing world, good drinking water quality is far from a “given.” The fact is that water contaminated with fecal matter causes widespread diarrheal illness and death, disproportionally affecting children under the age of five.  Recently, a group of researchers from The Cochrane Collaboration assessed several water treatment interventions taken at the household point of use for their effectiveness in improving water quality and preventing diarrhea.

Sharing the Gift of Water Treatment in a Packet

How is drinking water purified in regions of the globe where treatment facilities are unavailable?  The answer can lie in a tiny packet of powdered “point-of-use” water treatment chemicals.  For example, the Proctor & Gamble [P&G]Purifier of WaterTM is a mini-treatment system in a packet that helps extend the advantages of water treatment to people

Water, Sanitation and the Millennium Development Goals: A Report Card on Global Progress

Graphic from UN Millennium Development Goals and Beyond 2015 website  In 2000, the United Nations adopted a set of eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to improve the lives of the poorest people on Earth.  As the 15-year MDG timeline runs out, a final report on this ambitious program reflects both mixed success and overall optimism. 

Antibiotic Resistance and Wastewater Effluent Chlorination

Does chlorination of sewage treatment plant (STP) effluent reduce or promote antibiotic resistant microorganisms?  Recent research presented at the national meeting of the American Chemical Society provides evidence that this practice might give rise to trace levels of new, stronger antibiotics, which in turn could possibly foster antibiotic resistant microorganisms.  University of North Carolina researcher

TTHM in Drinking Water: The Flint, Michigan Story, A Lesson for Us All

The citizens of Flint, Michigan used to take the high quality of their drinking water for granted, expecting, like most of us, to access safe, wholesome water at the tap.  Lately, however, they are worried about the quality of their water and they have many questions for municipal officials. Flint residents are outraged over reports