Water Quality Criteria

Topics: Water, Safe Drinking Water Act, Drinking water Pages: 2 (356 words) Published: July 9, 2011
Water Quality

Water Quality Criteria are levels of individual pollutants or water quality characteristics, or descriptions of conditions of a body of water that, if met, will generally protect the designated use of the water. For a given DU, there are likely to be a number of criteria dealing with different types of conditions, as well as levels of specific chemicals... Water quality criteria must be fit the use of water. Only scientific considerations are taken into consideration when determining the water quality criteria. Our feelings are not considered when developing water quality criteria. . Human health criteria can apply to two exposure routes: drinking water and consuming aquatic food. Criteria is distinguished according to the types of organisms they are designed to protect. Aquatic life criteria is aimed at protecting aquatic organisms, including a wide variety of animals and various plants and microorganisms. Wildlife criteria, like human health/fish consumption criteria, deal with the effects of pollutants with high factors Water quality is determined by assessing three things: biological, chemical, and physical. Standards of water quality are set for each of these three. Thus to distinguish between water quality criteria pollutants and maximum contaminant levels you need to look at the primary and secondary water standards. Primary water standards regulate organic and inorganic chemicals, microbial pathogens, and radioactive elements that may affect the safety of drinking water. These standards set a limit--the Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL)--on the highest concentrations of certain chemicals allowed in the drinking water supplied by a public water system. Secondary water standards regulate chloride, color, copper, foaming agents, iron, manganese, odor, pH, sulfates, and total dissolved solids, all of which may affect qualities of drinking water like taste, odor, color, and appearance. The concentration of these contaminants is referred to as...
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