Establishing the Relative Process Risks for Chlorination and Ozonation - A Case Study Illustrates the Need to Evaluate the Process Hazard Implications of a Change in Drinking Water Disinfection Process due to D/DBP Regulations

by Paul G. Beswick,
Craig E. Brackbill,
L. Donald Duke,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: North American Water and Environment Congress & Destructive Water


Many drinking water suppliers in this country may choose to modify their primary disinfection process to meet stricter water quality standards under the United States Environmental Protection Agencys proposed Disinfectants/Disinfection By-Products Rule. Public health issues related to drinking water quality have been the primary focus in the development of the proposed Rule. The potential process hazard implications of prospective disinfection process changes are a perspective that has not yet been explored. Process hazard risk may increase if the modified disinfection process uses additional hazardous chemicals (toxic, flammable and/or explosive) which may cause death, injury and/or negative environmental impact. This paper considers the process hazard implications for a large drinking water supplier that chooses to change its primary disinfection process from chlorination to ozonation at several treatment plants to comply with the proposed Rule. A systematic method for identifying and comparing process risks for chlorination and ozonation could provide information useful in evaluating such a decision. The authors present the key elements of one possible method and discuss, qualitatively, the potential process risks that could arise from this type of process change.

Subject Headings: Water treatment | Water quality | Water supply | Ozonization | Drinking water | Chlorine | Case studies | United States

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