A simple model for quantifying Cryptosporidium transport, dilution, and potential risk in reservoirs

Antenucci, Jason P.; Brookes, Justin D.; Hipsey, Matthew R.
January 2005
Journal: American Water Works Association;Jan2005, Vol. 97 Issue 1, p86
Academic Journal
Outbreaks of waterborne disease have been associated with rainfall when pathogens are washed from the watershed and transported into reservoirs via riverine inflows. To help quantify the concentration and viability of Cryptosporidium contamination in lakes and reservoirs after such occurrences, the authors have developed a simple model that can be accessed online. In addition to the basic dynamics of inflows, the model includes fate transformations associated with temperature, ultraviolet light exposure, and sedimentation. The model's ability to predict inflow characteristics was tested during several inflows at three reservoirs in Australia. The data presented demonstrate the model's effectiveness as well as provide insight into the dynamics of inflow behavior in reservoirs and the processes affecting source water supply. Source water management is an increasingly important area of the water industry. Water utility operations and eventually public health can benefit from the effective use of a timing tool that can also help reduce treatment costs by selecting the best water for use in the plant. A simple model has been developed to assist in quantifying the concentration and viability of Cryptosporidium contamination in lakes and reservoirs after riverine inflows. The model, which can be accessed online, includes the basic dynamics of inflows, along with fate transformations associated with temperature, ultraviolet light exposure, and sedimentation. The model was applied to inflow occurrences in three reservoirs to demonstrate its ability to simply quantify pathogen concentration. In addition to assisting with risk assessment, the model can also be used to improve sampling strategies after inflows occur.


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