Among the categorizations that we find, there are the physical, microbiological, inorganic and biological contaminants. These categories are not exhaustive since they can intersect, but they still allow the identification of contaminants.
In short, biological contamination in water refers to all pollutants originating from microorganisms and organic matter produced by various living things. In general, biological pollutants come mainly from domestic or industrial wastewater and animal farms. These contaminants are generally easy to treat compared to other types of pollutants that are more intrusive and persistent.
The different biological contaminants have various impacts on human health. Symptoms that may result from the consumption of a biological contaminant include diarrhea, vomiting or parasitic diseases such as E. coli.
Technologies for the treatment of biological contaminants are varied. These technologies can deactivate the contaminant or extract it. Whether we think of disinfection by UV irradiation, the addition of chemicals such as chlorine or hydrogen peroxide, ozonation or even electrodeionization, these techniques allow the deactivation of biological contaminants.
As for their extraction, the different filtration technologies (microfiltration, ultrafiltration and nanofiltration) have the capacity to extract some of these contaminants. Then, reverse osmosis membranes can also offer a good extraction rate of biological contaminants.
In short, whether they come from animals, human activity or industrial effluent, biological pollutants can have a serious impact on human health and safety. Techniques for reducing or inactivating biological contaminants are varied and effective. However, there is no magic bullet, so be sure to select the right technology for your situation, the contaminants you are dealing with, and your goals for your water use.