Basin Water to offer NSF 61 certified photocatalytic membrane systems
Basin Water Inc. announced that it will begin to offer NSF 61 certified photocatalytic membrane systems to drinking water providers in the United States via its agreement with Purifics ES Inc. (London, Ontario Canada). Known as Photo-Cat, the technology combines one of the best chemical-free advanced oxidation process ("AOP") technologies with long-life UV and maintenance-free ceramic membranes in a single unit operation...
• Recently certified Purifics ES Inc. technology will allow effective treatment in 1,4-dioxane, MTBE and PCPP applications
RANCHO CUCAMONGA, CA, June 9, 2008 -- Basin Water Inc. announced that it will begin to offer NSF 61 certified photocatalytic membrane systems to drinking water providers in the United States via its agreement with Purifics ES Inc. (London, Ontario Canada). Known as Photo-Cat™, the technology combines one of the best chemical-free advanced oxidation process ("AOP") technologies with long-life UV and maintenance-free ceramic membranes in a single unit operation.
Photo-Cat™ may be used alone or in combination with other treatment systems as a part of Basin Water's technology+services approach. That approach features long-term agreements that guarantee performance and costs over the lifetime of a project and delivers a low lifecycle cost. Photo-Cat™ technology can effectively treat a broad range of organic contaminants in groundwater, including 1,4-dioxane, methyl tertiary butyl ether ("MTBE") and pharmaceuticals and personal care products ("PPCPs"). It is the only system of its kind with NSF 61 certification.
According to Michael M. Stark, President & CEO of Basin Water, NSF 61 certification of Photo-Cat™ technology offers the operators of water systems assurance that the materials in the systems meet the standards set by the drinking water profession for safety and quality. "NSF certification of systems is an important part of assuring reliable, high quality drinking water to our communities. It also will make it easier for our customers to receive permitting -- meaning an overall faster response time in delivering new drinking water supplies and lower costs for compliance. These are essential elements of our relationship with our customers," he said. "We are excited about the opportunity we have to bring Photo-Cat™ technology to communities throughout the United States because it will address some of the most difficult treatment issues safely, efficiently and cost-effectively," he added.
In Feb. of this year, Basin Water announced an agreement under which it will have exclusive rights to market Purifics' technology for the reduction and destruction of organic materials in drinking water applications in North America. The exclusivity in this initial agreement applies to selected states in the U.S. and also covers non-exclusive rights to the remainder of North America subject to certain contract requirements.
Technology for the treatment and removal of organic contaminants
Photo-Cat™ is part of Basin Water's growing portfolio of technology designed to reduce and eliminate both natural and synthetic organic contaminants in drinking water and other impaired water applications. This technology compliments Basin Water's strong offering in the area of inorganic removal and will be of particular benefit to water system operators who have the need to treat multiple contaminants at their sites.
Photo-Cat™ technology can treat a very broad range of organic contaminants in groundwater, with particular effectiveness in compounds from light and heavy industry, including those resulting from industrial solvents, refineries and metal cutting operations. Basin Water has investigated the use of Photo-Cat™ technology to treat three contaminants that have recently received scrutiny by the regulatory community: 1,4-dioxane, MTBE, and PPCPs. 1-4 dioxane and MTBE are currently on the EPA's Candidate Contaminant List 3 ("CCL3") which is in public comment and review phase. If action is taken, it is expected that these will be regulated by the EPA with a national drinking water standard.
1,4-dioxane is a manmade compound primarily used as an industrial solvent or solvent stabilizer that prevents the breakdown of chlorinated solvents during manufacturing processes. Industrial solvents are used in degreasing, electronics, metal finishing, fabric cleaning, pharmaceuticals, herbicides and pesticides, antifreeze, paper manufacturing and many other applications. The EPA has not yet established a Federal drinking water standard or maximum contaminant level ("MCL") for 1,4-dioxane. California has also not set a MCL, but has set an advisory Action Level ("AL") of 3 ppb. An AL reflects calculations for acceptable risks based on best available data. Since there is no Federal standard, the states of Michigan, Maine and Massachusetts have set safety levels at 85 ppb, 70 ppb and 50 ppb, respectively.
MTBE is a fuel additive used to improve the environmental performance of unleaded fuels and has been produced in very large quantities in the United States over the last two decades -- but today is banned in most states. According to the EPA, low levels of MTBE can make water supplies undrinkable due to its offensive taste and odor and there is research that suggests that MTBE may be a carcinogen. Studies have shown that MTBE contamination of groundwater supplies occurs in every state in the U.S. Recently, a group of oil companies agreed to pay $423 million to settle lawsuits in seventeen states due to contamination claims involving the MTBE. Estimates of the cost of cleaning up MTBE in U.S. groundwater supplies run as high as $30 billion.
A PPCP refers to any product used by individuals for personal health or cosmetic reasons or used by agribusiness to enhance growth or health of livestock. PPCPs comprise a diverse collection of thousands of chemical substances, including prescription and over-the-counter therapeutic drugs, veterinary drugs, fragrances, and cosmetics. Because they dissolve easily and will not evaporate at normal temperatures or pressure, PPCPs make their way into the soil and into aquatic environments via sewage, treated sewage sludge and irrigation with reclaimed water. On March 10, 2008, the Associated Press reported that a wide array of pharmaceuticals - including antibiotics, anticonvulsants, mood stabilizers, and sex hormones - had been found in the drinking water supplies of at least 41 million Americans. The report said that concentrations of these pharmaceuticals are tiny, measured in quantities of parts per billion or trillion, far below the levels of a medical dose, but described concerns about long-term effects on human health. In the course of a five-month inquiry, the AP discovered that drugs have been detected in the drinking water supplies of 24 major metropolitan areas - from southern California and northern New Jersey to Detroit and Louisville. A subset of PPCPs, called endocrine disruptor chemicals ("EDCs"), is an issue of concern, because, according to the EPA, evidence suggests that environmental exposure may result in disruption of endocrine systems in human and wildlife populations. Studies have shown impacts including sex change in certain aquatic species. These substances can act like hormones in the endocrine system and disrupt the physiologic function of endogenous hormones. Studies have linked endocrine disruptors to adverse biological effects in animals, giving rise to concerns that low-level exposure might cause similar effects in human beings
According to Stark, Photo-Cat™ technology used within the Basin Water business model is an ideal approach to handle these and other naturally occurring or synthetic organic contaminants of concern. "These three organic contaminant challenges have in common that they require a very high level of removal efficiency and the challenge they represent to communities across the United States will be long-term. For the communities who will be asked to make new investments to address these issues, reliability and long-term cost-effectiveness are critical," he said. "Photo-Cat™ technology provides us with a remarkably effective way to meet our customers' water treatment goals. Including Photo-Cat™ as part of a Basin Water technology+services program will provide communities with one of the best long-term investments in safe drinking water over the lifetime of the project.
NSF International, an independent, not-for-profit organization, certifies products and writes standards for food, water and consumer goods.
Basin Water Inc. is a provider of reliable, long-term process solutions for a range of clients, which includes designing, building and implementing systems for the treatment of contaminated groundwater, the treatment of wastewater, waste reduction and resource recovery.