Water is one of the fundamental requirements for any form of living thing on earth. It is known for the many vital roles that it plays in the continued survival of animals and growth of plants. In animals, water plays an essential role in maintaining many processes that take place both in the system of the animal and the outside world as well. Water acts as a medium through which most chemical reactions take place within the body system of all animals. In plants, it plays several roles, mainly by allowing the absorption of dissolved nutrients and mineral salts present in the soil in order to allow absorption to take place. Therefore, the need for pure and safe water for the normal functions and activities in animals and plants is an important factor. This experiment compares the levels of purity of different sources of water ranging from direct tap water, the Dasani bottled water, and the Fiji bottled water as well as their contamination levels.
Water is considered as one of the most valuable resources on the earth planet. Its availability is fundamental for the survival of all living things and most important, the human survival. Every animal and plant on earth needs water for their survival. Water is not only required for drinking purposes, but is also needed for food production purposes, creation of shelter and many other related functions that are crucial for the fitness of different kinds of habitats. Water has contributed widely in transforming the surface of the earth into a varied topography that we witness today around the earth. Research findings from various experiments indicate that our planet is covered with about seventy percent of water, but only a small portion of this amount of water can be considered fresh and safe for human consumption. Ninety nine percent of the water is composed of salt water with a small portion of it being composed of glaciers. The earth’s population, therefore, has to survive and adjust to the available small percentage of water of one percent that is considered to be fresh water, due to the high costs involved in the transformation of salt water into fresh water. This cannot be afforded by the human population; therefore people across the world have to survive with the little available water.
This is a crucial experiment, and it was conducted to determine effective ways of improving water quality by conducting an extensive water quality research, an important measure to address the issue of water pollution. There have been recent related issues in West Virginia where the presence of chemicals in tap water forced a sum of three hundred people to cease from drinking water that was available in taps right in their homes. It was learned that more than seven hundred people reported symptoms of illness where seventy of them had gone to the hospital (Harris, 2014). Detergents are risky and bad when they are present in water that is meant to be used for human consumption and growth of crops. Experiments indicated that detergents have an effect of reducing the germination of seeds due to their destructive effects in the soil. It had general effects on seed germination, leaf number per plant, stem weight, plant height. It had other effects in the soil where the roots of the germinating seeds were severely affected. This were evident by reduced root length, a factor that destabilizes the crop and minimizes its ability to absorb water in the soil, reduced shoot length which hinders its ability to grow and access sunlight for pollination purposes, seed vigor, and seedling weight (Heidari, 2013). Large-mouth bass is greatly affected by changes in water purity levels due to availability of chemical contaminants. A combination of laboratory studies and biotelemetry studies indicates that a dissolved oxygen content of 2.0mg/L may be a crucial and critical threshold that induces the behavioral responses by largemouth bass during the winter season (Hasler, 2009).
The main objective of the second part of this experiment is to test whether hot water could be filtered using a variety of method applicable methods and the signs to contaminated water. Different methods could be applied on filtration of water basing on the cost of the method; the materials involved and the effectiveness of the method used. Some methods could be applied in the filtration of water process, but the results obtained may be not good for the survival of humans and production of crops. Different signs of contaminated water are also outlined in this part of the experiment ranging from the reaction of people and crops to it, and experimentations involved in determining these contaminants.
In most cases, contaminated water cannot be smelled or seen with the naked eye, therefore, experiments have to be advanced and completed. This will assist in identifying the chemical components present in water and the different ways involved in the filtration process of water.
Materials and Methods:
In this experiment I used a total of eight beakers, labeled one to eight, filled with 100ml of water using a well graduated cylinder of 100ml. I added 10ml of vegetable oil to the second beaker and mixed thoroughly with a wooden stir stick in order to create an evenly mixed concussion. I filled beaker 3 with 10 ml of vinegar mixing with a wooden stick and mixed thoroughly beaker 4 with 10ml of laundry detergents. In beakers 5-8, I folded one piece of cheesecloth to form a four layer of thick pieces of lining on the funnel. I then measured 60ml of soil and put it in the cheesecloth funnel. I poured 10ml of water that was contaminated into the beaker labeled 5. I repeated the same procedure for beakers labeled 6, 7, and 8 pouring the rest of the beakers labeled 2, 3, and 4 inside the cheesecloth funnel.
Next, I added 100ml of soil to a 250ml beaker. I then placed 200ml of water into the beaker and poured soil solution back and forth between the two 250ml beakers for a period of fifteen minutes. I then poured 10ml of contaminated water into a well cleaned and aerated 100ml beaker. I added into these ten grams of alum to the 250ml beaker with contaminated water and stirred vigorously with a wooden stick for a period of 1-2 minutes. After it mixed uniformly, I left it to stand for approximately fifteen minutes. After placing the funnel into a clean 250ml beaker, I then poured 100ml of tap water, Dasani and Fiji, into a 250ml beaker. I run tests on each of them for ammonia, chloride, 4 in 1, phosphate, and concluded with iron test strips.
These methods were done and applied to the experiment in order to determine the concentration of the given contaminants and their chemical level in their correct proportions. The experiment was conducted in a laboratory environment where there were no external factors that could influence the flow of the environment at any given time. A lot of factors were tried to be maintained at a constant level to ensure that there were no grounds to compromise the kind of results that were to be obtained from a given experiment. Temperature was maintained at the room level (25 degrees) to avoid the interference of the chemicals present in the water that was being tested to avoid favoring or limiting the presence of exothermic and endothermic reactions that could possibly take place in the course of the experiment. Pressure was minimized and maintained at its required position and volumes of liquids and put in quantities to avoid any forms of exaggeration in the correct the results that were going to be observed.
Results of experiment:
The results obtained from the experiment indicated that in beaker 1, there was no any sense of smell observed. Beaker three was observed to have a slight smell of vinegar present in it. Beaker four had a strong smell of the detergent observed in it. There was no observable smell in beaker labeled 5. There was also no smell in the beaker that was labeled 6 as well as the one that was labeled 7. Beaker 8b was observed to have a slight smell of the detergent that was used in the experiment. After the process of filtration took place, the filtered water was observed to have a strong smell of the soil that was used in the experiment, in the left beaker, but was weak as observed from the right beaker. For the case of the tap water, Fiji and Dasani had 0mg/l ammonia content when subjected to the respective tests. The chloride test strip all were seen to be 500mg/l. For the experiment conducted on the 4 in 1 test, the tap water was obse4rved to have a pH of 6, an approximate of 80mg/L concentration of alkalinity, 0 chlorine indication of pH, indicating low or no levels of acidity, and 50mg/L levels of water hardness present in it. The Dasani bottled water indicated a pH of 8, displaying high levels of alkalinity in them, o chlorine content, and 50mg/L levels of water hardness in them. Fiji bottled water had a pH of &, 80mg/L levels of alkalinity recorded, 0 chlorine content, and water hardness level of 50mg/L. All the three contents recorded a 10 parts per meter phosphate levels and zero iron content in them.
Experiment 1: Effects of Groundwater Contamination
Experiment 3: Drinking Water Quality
Analysis of the results:
According to the results, I found out that the Fiji bottled water would be the best for both the growth of crops and human consumption. Fiji bottled water has fewer acidic contents in them as displayed in the results. It has a better taste as compared to other waters from the tap water and Dasani bottled water. Growth of crops requires low acidic levels and some amount of alkalinity in order to maintain the processes of shoot formation and root elongation. All this forms of development have a positive impact on the lifetime of crops. Less acidic water is ideal for human consumption because the human body is designed to maintain a certain level of acidic balance. This is ideal in ensuring that the metabolic processes of the body are run within the required mediums of temperature, pressure, and acidic conditions. Intake of water that could have increased levels of acidic conditions in the body system of humans could distort the required mediums for the efficient performance of metabolic processes. Therefore, Fiji bottled water makes a good choice for both the consumption by people and the growth of crops in the fields.
I would accept the hypothesis I proposed above in the first question. The taste difference observed in both the three types of water mentioned and the level of acidity in them, indicating the extent of chemical contamination levels of them; indicate that it is the most preferred of the three.
According to the three types of water sources outlined and discussed in the experiment, I would conclude that Fiji bottled water is the best for the study cases. The Dasani takes the second position in the rank following the level of concentration of chemical contaminants in it. This difference occurs in the processes that take place in their respective companies where the level of chemical contaminations elimination processes varies due to the difference in man-power and machinery involved. Tap water takes the third position because it has fewer treatment processes that take place before it is conveyed to households for consumption. Most of the population use this type of water system to cater for their needs at home because it is cheap and can be accessed by the middle class level of population.
The bottled water is not worth the price considering the fact that it still has some levels of contaminations in them that render it not one hundred percent for human consumption and growth of crops. In order for it to be considered worth the price of its value, there is a need for surety and guarantee that it would not contain any forms of harmful substances if it were subjected to chemical tests to determine the levels of chemical contaminants present in them. There is no chance that is evident that between the three types of water discussed in the experiment, the bottled type of water is one hindered percent clean and free from any contaminations that may be harmful to the consumption and growth of crops.
In summary, the experimentation on the three types of water sources indicates that the chemical levels observed in tap water is more harmful to use compared to the bottled types of water sources. Tap water passes through a lot of salty sources and chemical components that ends up mixing and forming solutions that react negatively with the body system. All the methods applicable for clearing chemical components and contaminants in water should employ the use of methods that completely neutralize the harmful components present in water, and the substances should be environment friendly and compatible to the human system as well as the growth of crops. Clean water can then be obtained for use without the risks involved on human life and growth of crops.
Turk, J., & Bensel, T. (2011). Contemporary environmental issues. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc.
Harris, D. (2014). West Virginia Water Contaminated.Good Morning America(ABC), 1.
Heidari, H. (2013). Effect of Irrigation with Contaminated Water by Cloth Detergent on Seed Germination Traits and Early Growth of Sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.). Notulae Scientia Biologicae, 5(1), 86-89
National Research Council (U.S.), & Camp Lejeune (N.C.), National Research Council (U.S.) (2009). Contaminated water supplies at Camp Lejeune: Assessing potential health effects. Washington, D.C: National Academies Press.
Gilbertz, S. J., & Milburn, T. (2011). Citizen discourse on contaminated water, Superfund cleanups, and landscape restoration: (re)making Milltown, Montana. Amherst, N.Y: Cambria Press.