Assessing efficiency of pre-ammonization aimed at reducing carcinogenic risks caused by trihalomethanes in drinking water.
L.A. Deryabkina1, B.I. Marchenko1,2, N.K. Plugotarenko2, A.I. Yukhno2
1Center for Hygiene and Epidemiology in Rostov Region, Taganrog Office, 16a Bol'shoi Ave., Taganrog, 347930, Russian Federation
2Southern Federal University, 105/42 Bol'shaya Sadovaya Str., Rostov-on-Don, 344006, Russian Federation
In most Russian regions there is still a pressing issue related to providing population with high quality and safe drinking water. Up to now, chlorination has been the primary technique applied to disinfect drinking water as it is highly efficient, reliable, and relatively cheap. However, when chlorine is used to disinfect natural water that contains organic pollutants, it results in risks of by-products occurrence. These products are trihalomethanes, epigenetic carcinogenesis promoters that cause elevated carcinogenic risks under oral, inhalation, and subcutaneous exposure.
Our research goal was to hygienically assess efficiency of pre-ammonization applied in water treatment procedures in order to prevent occurrence of carcinogenic organic chlorine compounds during chlorination and to minimize carcinogenic risks. We determined trihalomethanes and residual chlorine contents in model samples of natural water taken from a surface water source after chlorination with different doses of chlorine. We examined 52 pair parallel samples that had undergone pre-ammonization with ammonia sulfate and control ones. Trihalomethanes concentrations were determined in model water samples with gas-liquid chromatography.
Basing on the results obtained via experiments on laboratory chlorination of river water, we determined quantitative characteristics and built regression models showing dependence between concentrations of organic chlorine compounds occurring due to chlorination (chloroform, dichlorobrommethane, dibromchloromethane) and chlorine doses and preammonization parameters. It was established that pre-ammonization was the most efficient in terms of preventing trihalomethanes occurrence under such disinfection modes when contents of residual active chlorine didn’t exceed recommended levels (0.8–1.2 mg/L). Basic ways to minimize carcinogenic risks caused by trihalomethanes are systemic control over their contents in drinking water during social and hygienic monitoring procedures; preliminary ammonization of water taken from surface water sources; prevention of unjustified hyper-chlorination; preliminary deep purification of initial water; disinfection with ultrasound radiation instead of preliminary chlorination; etc.
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