Riverbank Filtration: A Sustainable Process to Attenuate Contaminants during Drinking Water Production
Riverbank filtration leads to purification of water. For India it can be a simple, economical and effective alternative. A few unanswered questions were: Can it work in Indian mountainous regions? Will it be of any advantage in the case of some of the polluted Indian surface waters? With the goal to evaluate use of riverbank filtration as a sustainable technology under widely varying conditions prevalent in India, the effectiveness of riverbank filtration has been examined over the last 10 years. In the case of cleaner surface waters, the wells deliver water free of turbidity and coliform even during monsoon irrespective of well configuration. In the case of polluted source waters, it results in an overall advantage in terms of improved raw water quality, reduced degree and cost of subsequent treatment and decreased levels of disinfection by-products. The study shows riverbank filtration to be an effective and sustainable option for plains as well as the mountainous region.