Is Agricultural nitrogen pollution a problem for Drinking Water?
Growing enough food to support an ever-increasing population places complicated demands on the ecology, the most significant of which is agricultural run-off. Excessive fertiliser usage can damage water sources, necessitating the employment of a nitrate removal solution to make the water safe to drink.
Low-cost synthetic fertiliser, on the other hand, is essential to improve agricultural yields and fulfil the world's food demand. Without it, the world's population, which has more than doubled in the previous 50 years, will be unable to feed itself.
The origin of the problem
The problem began in the 1950s, when fertiliser was applied in higher quantities than crops could absorb. Excess nitrates are flushed into the groundwater by irrigation because nitrogen, an essential component in fertiliser, is water soluble.
More than 80% of fertiliser used in agriculture, plant, and animal production is lost to the environment on a global scale. Agriculture is becoming less efficient at using nitrogen, and more nitrogen is entering surface and groundwater sources than ever before.
This excess nitrogen causes an overload of nitrate in drinking water, which has been related to a variety of health problems. More than a third of the water used for public supply in cities and towns across the world originates from nitrate-contaminated groundwater.
Pollution caused by nitrates is a worldwide problem
Nitrogen pollution is a widely ignored environmental problem, with no international treaty or UN agency to promote awareness about it. While our world population has gotten more efficient in its use of natural resources, we have not followed suit in our fertiliser consumption.
The UN Environment Programme and the Global Environment Facility met at New York University in early 2018 to discuss the International Nitrogen Management System, a $60 million research project that will last five years.
One key result is that by mid-century, we must have cut our nitrogen emissions in half, otherwise our ecosystems, especially drinking water, would be jeopardised.To do this, it will be necessary to nearly double the efficiency of nitrogen utilisation on the global scale, among other things.
Contamination _ Impact on health
Methemoglobinemia, often known as blue baby syndrome, has long been related to high levels of nitrate pollution in drinking water, posing a risk to newborns, pregnant women, and other vulnerable individuals.
Furthermore, while nitrate in groundwater has long been suspected of increasing the risk of cancer, the findings of a recent study confirm that it increases the risk of colon cancer. At quantities lower than those allowed as current drinking water regulations, rectal cancer can also occur. The greatest concentrations can be found in small private wells.
The drinking water standard should be reduced to protect against not only Methemoglobinemia, the most common nitrate contamination worry, but also chronic nitrate pollution impacts like cancer.
Agriculture and Safe Drinking Water: Finding a Happy Medium
Water is majorly drawn from private wells by the ones who are most sensitive to nitrate contamination.
Furthermore, nitrate contamination is more common in locations where local soil and geological factors enable nitrate leaching into groundwater simpler. While long-term solutions to nitrate pollution in agricultural runoff are needed, municipalities and inhabitants must also be protected in the near term.
Netsol is a one-time solution provider for all the related problems. Gained the position and being recognized as one of the globally leading manufacturers of the water solution equipment, Netsol promises in providing the best to the customers.