Water Quality Management

Water is an essential aspect of life for microscopic plankton all the way to humans. It can exist as freshwater, marine saltwater, estuary brackish water and groundwater. Different types of water will all have various qualities that determine what it will be suitable for in terms of usage. Different management techniques can be applied and usually depends on the use of the water whether it is for irrigation, fish rearing, potable drinking supply, swimming, industrial waste management, natural aquatic environments or just a visual water feature. Having such a diverse spectrum of applications, it is essential to factor the purpose of the water to determine whether natural biological treatment or chemical treatment methods are better suited.

Water quality is usually affected by the use and the environment around it. This can include recreational, agricultural, animal rearing, industrial and household. These surrounding areas can leech runoff and other contaminants into the water body and alter the aquatic chemistry and therefore the original ecology. High nutrient loads can cause algal blooms or decrease available dissolved oxygen for fish in the system. The flowing nature of water means a compromised water body can also contaminate another. Some common parameters for water quality are dissolved oxygen (DO), temperature, salinity, pH, nitrates, nitrites, ammonia and total dissolved solids.

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