16 Apr 2014

Water Treatment – Preventing Risks to Our Fresh Water Supply

Uncategorized, Water Treatment, Well Maintenance Comments Off on Water Treatment – Preventing Risks to Our Fresh Water Supply

Damages to our drinking water supplies have recently been in the news again. So far in 2014, two major stories come to mind: the chemical spill in West Virginia, and the coal ash spill in North Carolina. Though unrelated, these two incidents share many similarities. Both were accidents; both times, hazardous chemicals linked to coal were released into fresh water sources used by communities for drinking water; and both were likely preventable, had the companies responsible done more to maintain and monitor the systems that failed and implement better water treatment practices.


Even though the West Virginia spill happened in January, and the North Carolina spill occurred in February, a quick Google search shows news articles and other content continue to be published about the events and their consequences. Unfortunately, a similar web search proves that neither of these episodes is unprecedented by any means. Our water supplies are constantly under threat, and municipal utility agencies cannot always protect us and keep harmful materials out of our taps.


A recent National Geographic analysis highlighted three major risk factors affecting drinking water around the country. Let’s take a look at what they are, and why they make the list.


Power Stations

The United States relies heavily on coal to power everything from the air conditioning in your office, to the device you’re reading this article on. Just like a campfire leaves behind wood ash, coal leaves behind residual material once it is burned. The more coal burnt, the more coal ash created, which includes nasty stuff like mercury, arsenic, and lead.


To store it all, energy companies mix the ash with water and leave it in large slurry ponds. Sometimes these ponds break open and spill their contents into waterways, like we saw in North Carolina a couple months ago and across the country over the years.


Mother Nature

Severe weather plays a significant role in the quality of our drinking water. Major storms like hurricanes, massive floods, and devastating droughts wreak havoc on water supplies. Storms and floods can flush everything from pesticides to manure into our rivers. Lasting droughts can decrease fresh water levels and force residents in those regions to make tough choices about how to use and allocate existing sources of water.



Whether you blame threats to water on spills, accidents, pollution or other, more nefarious actions, perhaps the biggest threat to our drinking water supplies may be the very things that drink the water – us. Pharmaceutical and personal care products (PPCPs), things like drugs and antibiotics, soaps, lotions, all the stuff we flush down our toilets and wash down our drains, ends up in the water supply and at some level, back in our drinking water at home. All of this may have a damaging effect on people and animals.


What’s more, infrastructure across the country is aging rapidly, and may not be equipped to handle an ever-growing population without billions or even trillions of dollars in investments.


So what can you do? Well, for starters, don’t panic. For every problem and risk out there, you can bet that folks are working hard to develop safer and more effective solutions. At the local level, it is important to be aware of the issues we face, and to take an active role in staying informed and educated.


Remember, C&J Well Company offers a wide range of water well and water quality solutions. Our many professional products and services are designed to enhance your drinking water, whether you rely a municipal source, a private well, or both. We invite you to explore our website and contact us today to learn more about safeguarding your drinking water supply at home.