Alternatives to Phosphate for Plumbosolvency Control
ISBN: 1 84057 622 7
This report and associated spreadsheet-based tool provide UKWIR and water companies with the opportunity to assess the long term economic costs and benefits of phosphorus dosing and possible alternatives to reducing lead levels in drinking water, such as lead pipe replacement or rehabilitation. It examines current water company approaches to meeting the new drinking water standard for lead of 10micrograms/litre, which is to be applied from December 2013. Existing industry data forms the basis of a spreadsheet-based tool for estimating financial and wider economic costs and benefits (eg impacts on health and phosphorus removal in wastewater treatment) of different approaches to managing lead levels in drinking water, prudently allowing assessment of potential future increases in phosphate prices. The report concludes that alternatives to phosphate dosing far outweigh its current cost; however, ensuring compliance is unlikely without remediation of customers' lead supply pipes as well as internal plumbing, lead solder and fittings containing lead. The report acknowledges uncertainties in impact estimation, particularly relating to health and the environment, but data within the tool can be easily updated as more accurate information becomes available.
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