Agriculture is a large part of the economic landscape in Ohio, USA, with large crops of soybeans, corn, wheat, apples, peaches, peppers, tomatoes, potatoes, tobacco, cucumbers and more being grown for domestic use and export. The state supports over 14 million acres of farmland and hosts over 70,000 farms.
The abundance of rolling farms is beautiful, but agricultural runoff is due to the fertilizer—both natural manure and chemicals is an issue. This soil contains fertilizers with inorganic nitrogen, and waste containing organic nitrogen decompose and give off ammonia, which is then oxidized into nitrate and nitrite. In the Columbus, Ohio area in Franklin Country, this resulted in very high nitrate levels in the municipal water supply.
The high levels of nitrate and nitrite are of concern, particularly to young children, as it disrupts oxygen transfer in the cells, resulting in oxygen starvation. In adults, it can affect thyroid function and interact with some medications.
Nitrate levels are regulated by both the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (US FDA) for a maximum contaminant level (MCL) in the water of 10 ppm, expressed as nitrogen. The World Health Organization (WHO) has a guideline value for nitrate in water that is slightly higher at 11.3 ppm, expressed as nitrogen. Depending on the season, nitrate levels within the Columbus water sources could exceed this MCL and require treatment.
The Dublin Road Nitrate Plant engineers reached out to Purolite to help resolve this issue. For over six years, they worked together to plan and design a system that would effectively treat the water's nitrate. Together, they have maintained appropriate regulations to keep the community safe, including extensive pilot testing that considered many different water chemistry scenarios.
Purolite takes great pride in offering customized solutions for nitrate and other contaminants to keep water safe and clean. Contact your local sales office to learn more about nitrate treatment in water systems.
BOSS Magazine featured an article on the capacity increase project at Dublin Road Water Treatment facility that discussed the leadership, innovation, collaboration, sustainability and best operational procedures incorporated into the plant. Purolite was invited to provide a company showcase for the issue because we played a significant role in the upgrade and the control of nitrate in the treated water.