Downstream Drinking Water Impacts of Fossil Fuel Extraction and Utilization Choices

Track 4C: Water-Energy Nexus: Meeting Challenges and Finding Solutions
Friday, October 13, 2017, 10:00 am – 11:50 am

Jeanne M. VanBriesen
Duquesne Light Company Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Director of the Center for Water Quality in Urban Environmental Systems
Carnegie Mellon University

Changes in human activities associated with fossil fuel extraction (i.e., produced water discharges) and utilization (i.e., power plant discharges) can alter source waters in ways that affect drinking water treatment choices, costs, and quality. These new sources of bromide have the potential to increase bromination of disinfection by-products (DBPs), requiring changes to treatment at the drinking water plant or new methods for DBP control in the distribution system. A recently completed regional study in Southwestern Pennsylvania assessed the impact of energy choices on disinfection by-products in multiple drinking water plants.