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Water Purification – Ecosystem Services and Water Treatment

Grade 7
Jun 6, 2023

Services Provided by the Ecosystem

  • Nature has been helping individuals in almost every field for a very long time. The immense products we acquire from the environment are valuable. Ecosystem services are the numerous products and services that mankind obtains from the environment.
  • The ecosystem offers clean air, extreme weather protection, agriculture, and many more services to support human health and stability. Apart from these, the provision of safe drinking water, waste decomposition, and the resilience and productivity of food ecosystems are all included.
  • According to the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA) of 2006, ecosystem services are divided into four categories. They are cultural, supportive, provisioning, and regulatory.

Provisioning Services

Most people think of food when asked to specify a service supplied by nature. As direct products of ecosystems, we have access to fruits, vegetables, trees, fish, and cattle.

Any form of benefit to people that can be taken from nature is referred to as a provisioning service.

Drinking water, timber, wood fuel, natural gas, oils, plants that may be used to make garments and other textiles, and therapeutic benefits are all examples of provisioning services.

Regulating Services

The benefit supplied by ecological processes that moderate natural phenomena is known as a regulating service.

The ecosystem provides the following regulating services:

  • The environment’s purified water and air.
  • Climate regulations and the availability of the most significant compound, carbon.
  • The prey population is regulated by the process of predation that occurs in the environment.
  • Controlling biological pests and diseases is a practice.
  • Pollination plays an important role in ecology.
  • Flood prevention was included in the regulation of environmental disturbance.

Cultural Services

The non-material benefits that people receive from nature are known as Cultural Ecosystem Services (CES).

The ecosystem’s cultural services include:

  • Ecotourism, outdoor sports, and recreation are examples of recreational activities.
  • Ecotherapy, social forestry, and animal-assisted therapy are examples of therapeutics.
  • The religious or heritage worth of nature is included in the spiritual and historical aspects.
  • Books, movies, paintings, folklore, national emblems, advertising, and other cultural services are examples of cultural services.
  • Supporting ecosystem services.
  • Nutrients, cycling, primary production, soil formation, and habitat provision are examples of ecosystem services.
  • Some services such as food supply, flood control, and water purification are also included.
  • Human-ecosystem interaction is extremely important. People are disturbing the environment due to the increased demand for survival in the ecosystem. It is past time to pay close attention to environmental issues and make effective use of them.
Ecosystem's cultural services
Ecosystem’s cultural services


Wastewater and Sewage Treatment

Wastewater is the water that becomes contaminated due to numerous activities such as washing, bathing, mopping, and so on.

Sewage treatment, often known as water cleaning, eliminates contaminants from wastewater before it may be reused or delivered to water bodies.

Sewage: It is a liquid waste that contains most water (along with numerous types of contaminants).

Wastewater and Sewage
Wastewater and Sewage

Impurities Found in Water

Sewers: The pipelines that transport wastewater.

Sewerage: The network of pipelines that transport wastewater

Manhole: These are the holes drilled into sewers at regular intervals so that sewer inspections and cleaning can be done on a timely basis. People and traffic can easily pass through the manhole because it is covered with a sturdy lid.

Composition of Sewage

Composition of Sewage
Composition of Sewage

Sewage Treatment Plant

These are large plants that filter wastewater before sending it to nearby water bodies or reusing it. Sewage treatment uses physical, chemical, and biological methods to eliminate contaminants from wastewater.

Sewage Treatment Plant
Sewage Treatment Plant

Water Purification Stages

The water we drink in our homes is usually contaminated with suspended pollutants like sand, silt, and clay, as well as soluble impurities like salts and bacteria. As a result, water must be purified in large purification plants before reaching our houses.

Water Purification Stages
Water Purification Stages

Water can be purified by various physical methods such as filtration, sedimentation and decantation, and distillation.


Insoluble pollutants are eliminated by running impure water through a filter or filter paper in this procedure.


Sedimentation and Decantation:

Impure water is allowed to remain undisturbed in a container, allowing insoluble contaminants like mud to settle as sediments at the bottom. It is known as sedimentation.

The procedure of decantation can then be used to transport clean water into a clean container.

Sedimentation and Decantation
Sedimentation and Decantation


Impure water is first heated to its boiling point in order to turn it into steam in this process. In the container, the contaminants are left behind. After that, the steam is transferred via a condenser, where it cools and returns to liquid water.


Purification of Water at Home

It’s possible that the water we drink in our homes isn’t completely free of contaminants. Water is also drawn directly from wells, hand pumps, and rivers in villages and small towns.

As a result, water purification at home becomes important. Physical (e.g., boiling) and chemical (e.g., chemical tablets and electric water filters) methods can be used to make water free from impurities.


Boiling: One of the simplest ways to purify water is to boil it. However, it is critical that water be boiled for at least 10-15 minutes at 100 °C to eliminate harmful germs.



Chemicals such as chlorine tablets or potassium permanganate can be added to the water of wells and water tanks to destroy harmful microbes and germs.

Sometimes, bleaching powder is also added to chlorinate the water.

After chlorination, the water is fit for drinking.


Use of an Electric Water Filter

A microporous filter, carbon, and a source of UV light are all included in the electric water filter. Physical pollutants in the water, such as dust, metal, dirt, and mud, are filtered out by the microporous filter.

Carbon absorbs organic pollutants and eliminates unpleasant odors and tastes.

Microorganisms are killed by ultraviolet radiation.

Electric Water Filter
Electric Water Filter


Air is pumped into clarified water to allow bacteria to multiply. Bacteria feed on human excrement. After several hours, the microorganisms settle to the bottom. The top layer of water is then removed. This water is suitable for irrigation and can be used accordingly.

Aerated water is not desired for drinking purposes.

Water Purification using Sunlight

In many developing countries, sunlight is already being used to purify water.

Solar water disinfection is the common name for this procedure (SODIS). Many disease-causing microbes have been proven to deactivate when exposed to sunshine.

Despite its numerous benefits, this approach does have some drawbacks. The efficiency of water is determined by the length of time it is exposed to the sun, the strength of the sun, the bottle material, and other factors.

Water purification using sunlight
Water purification using sunlight

The following are the basic steps in using sunlight to purify water:

  1. Clean the bottle well.
  2. Fill the bottle with water and cover it.
  3. Place the bottle on a rooftop or a corrugated iron sheet.

Alternative Arrangements for Sewage Disposal

  • If a sewage infrastructure is not available, preparations for onsite sewage disposal can be made. Septic tanks, for example, are constructed to collect human excrement. Human excrement decomposes into compost over time.
  • Composting pits can be built to deposit waste and turn it into manure. Sewage can be collected and converted into useful biogas in biogas plants.
  • Chemical toilets are a relatively new invention. They do not need a lot of water to dispose of human waste and are environmentally friendly. These types of restrooms are ideal for trains.

Importance of Water Purification

Importance of Water Purification
Importance of Water Purification
  • Purification of water contributes to keeping the environment safe and clean.
  • If someone uses water bottles, it means they buy them on a regular basis and discard the empty bottles, which cannot be recycled. Finally, it indicates that by drinking bottled water, we are consuming pure water and, as a result, causing environmental damage. Water filters, on the other hand, properly discharge hazardous waste, which helps to keep the environment clean and protected.
  • Assists in the prevention of a variety of cancer-causing factors
  • Different types of chemicals and viruses found in contaminated water cause different diseases and can increase the risk of cancer. Pure drinking water, on the other hand, keeps things going in the digestive tract and helps to push food through, resulting in a healthy digestive system.
  • Assurance of excellent water quality
  • Water is used in different ways in our houses, including bathing, cooking, washing, and planting. The higher the quality of water you utilize, the better the environment you will be able to preserve.
  • Chlorine is removed from the water, making it safe to drink.
  • Chlorine is commonly used in swimming pool water, which can cause tanning, but it is not safe to drink because chlorine is toxic to the human body. Chlorine has a number of negative effects on human health. It can cause breathing difficulties, chest tightness, skin-eye irritation, and a variety of other health issues. As a result, before you consume it, be sure it’s chlorine-free.
  • Filtered water is free of lead, which is extremely harmful to human health.
  • Water purification machines eliminate all accessible lead from the water in a moment. As a result, you may expect to keep your family safe from diseases caused by harmful substances. According to scientists, lead is the most common cause of learning disorders in children. As a result, having a water purifying system is highly recommended.
  • It strengthens the digestive system of humans.
  • If you have a constipation problem, you will notice a difference by drinking purified water. It can also aid in the storage of regular bowel movements. Constipation is caused by eating unhealthy foods and drinking contaminated water that is high in heavy chlorine and other hazardous components, which affects our digestion and causes severe constipation difficulties.
  • The consumption of purified water improves skin issues.
  • Using clean water to wash and cook your meals helps to maintain the natural flavor of the food. Unfiltered water, on the other hand, may impact the taste of food due to pollutants and other germs. Purified water is the best way to keep your food healthy and tasty. It is highly advised that you install a water purifying system in your kitchen in order to prepare tasty food.
Water purification


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