Aerobic spore-forming bacteria for assessing quality of drinking water produced from surface water

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Journal: Water Res 2005/11/11
Published: 2005
Authors: Mazoua, S.;Chauveheid, E.
Address: Water Quality Department, Brussels Water Company (C.I.B.E.), Chaussee de Waterloo 764, 1180 Brussels, BE, Belgium.

Cryptosporidium and Giardia represent a major microbiological issue for drinking water production from surface water. As their monitoring through a treatment process is rather tedious and as low-concentration goals should be reached for drinking water, aerobic spore-forming bacteria (ASFB) have been studied as an indicator microorganism for a drinking water treatment plant using surface water. The results reveal that monitoring naturally occurring ASFB better highlights daily achievable performances and identifies unusual process events for global disinfection, for both physical and chemical treatment steps in a multi-barrier drinking water treatment plant. Advantages of ASFB over usual process parameters are that these microorganisms are more sensitive to process fluctuations. The use of ASFB also showed that the efficiency of ozone disinfection is not as significantly influenced by the water temperature as reported, despite similar or higher CT values applied during warmer periods. Thus, the disinfection of resistant microorganisms with ozone can also be an efficient process at lower water temperature. ASFB have been shown to be a conservative indicator for Cryptosporidium and Giardia up to a 1st stage filtration and the ASFB Log removals can be used to estimate Log removals for Cryptosporidium and Giardia: compared to ASFB, the Log removals for Cryptosporidium or Giardia are at least equal or 50% higher, respectively. Thus, the monitoring of ASFB along a drinking water treatment process could be a useful tool for performing risk analysis for parasites such as Cryptosporidium and Giardia, and would further allow integration of daily variability into a risk analysis.

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