AbleToTrain by Willing & Able

Water pollution prevention

Introduction

Water pollution can occur from a variety of sources. Many solids, liquids, and gaseous contaminants can pollute the water environment if they enter it. Chemicals, oil, and waste products are examples of common pollutants. Even items that pose no risk to human health, such as milk, can have major consequences for the aquatic environment.

If you discharge anything other than clean, uncontaminated water into surface or groundwater, you must get permission. Surface waters, which include rivers, reservoirs, and canals, account for a tiny portion of fresh water reserves. All water below the water table is considered groundwater. Groundwater is the largest available fresh water reserve.

This article explains the primary causes of water contamination and when enterprises must apply for surface water or groundwater permits. It also outlines how to avoid water contamination problems and provides advice on appropriate drainage systems.

Three best water pollution prevention tips

Water contamination can be caused by almost any solid, liquid, or gaseous substance. However, there are practical strategies to reduce your chances of triggering water pollution accidents.

Some of these steps may be included as requirements of your permission or licence if you have a pollution prevention and control permit or waste management licence, which you must comply with.

Store and handle things with care

It is critical that you store and handle things responsibly. For instance, you should:

  • Hazardous compounds should be stored in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations.

  • Label containers clearly and precisely.

  • Preserve only the bare minimum of materials.

  • Store incompatible substances, such as chemicals that may react with one another.

  • Make sure you are aware of any limitations on how you can utilize chemicals.

  • Teach your employees how to properly store and handle chemicals.

  • Take extra precautions when handling and transporting items.

  • If you keep oil in containers, such as gasoline or diesel, you must follow certain legal criteria.

Avoid pollution caused by uncontrolled releases or leaks

Put in place safeguards to avoid uncontrolled releases or leaks from polluting the environment.

For instance, you should:

  • Isolate loading and unloading sites from the surface water drainage system. If this is not possible, use sandbags, matting, or other methods to prevent surface water drains.

  • To contain any spills, store all above-ground storage tanks, drums, and containers on an impermeable base within a drip tray, bund, or other suitable secondary containment system.

  • Install drip trays or other kinds of containment beneath any equipment that is prone to leaking or leaking pollutants. Drip trays should be emptied on a regular basis to avoid overflow. The contents of the trays may have to be disposed of as hazardous waste.

  • Keep an updated drainage plan and color code your drains to prevent contamination from your drainage system.

Plan for pollution incidents

Prepare for an accident on your job site. For instance, you should:

  • Create a pollution event response strategy and teach employees how to use it.

  • Keep absorbent materials, such as sand, and other containment equipment adequate for containing the type and quantity of substances you store and use on your site, and ensure your employees are aware of their location.

  • Make sure your site and storage spaces are always secure, especially after hours, so that containers cannot be tampered with.

  • You may be held responsible for pollution created by intruders’ harm.