Presentation on theme: "Phosphorus Phosphorus and its Importance to Water Quality."— Presentation transcript:
Phosphorus Phosphorus and its Importance to Water Quality
What is Phosphorus? A nonmetallic element of the nitrogen family Phosphorus is one of the key elements necessary for growth of plants and animals. Phosphates PO4--- are formed from this element. Phosphates exist in three forms: orthophosphate, metaphosphate (or polyphosphate) and organically bound phosphate
Acceptable Phosphorus Levels There is no water quality standard for total phosphorus. A guideline of 0.05 milligrams per milliliter is used for purposes of comparison. Sites with total phosphorus concentrations above this level are at risk of excessive algal growth.
Sources of Phosphorus The Primary Point Source for Phosphorus in surface waters is sewage treatment plants Additional Phosphorus originates from the use of industrial products, such as toothpaste, detergents, pharmaceuticals, and food- treating compounds Natural sources include Phosphate deposits/- rich rocks, and sediments in lakes and reservoirs
The Impact of Phosphorus Excessive concentrations of Phosphorus can cause extensive growth of aquatic plants and algal blooms This can lead to depletion of oxygen that is dissolved in water, which can ultimately lead to the deaths of fish and other aquatic life.