Seasonal Taste & Odor Treatment

When algae blooms die in late summer/early fall, chemicals such as geosmin and 2-methylisoborneol (MIB) are released causing water to smell and taste earthy or musty.

Taste and odor (T&O) events in municipal drinking water occur as a result of algae blooms in surface water sources. When algae die, chemicals such as geosmin or 2-methylisoborneol (MIB) are released and cause the water to taste and smell earthy, musty, swampy, or grassy. These same algae blooms can release potent toxins to the water (“algal toxins”). Concentrations as low as 10 parts per trillion (ppt) or less of certain contaminants are enough to impart an unpleasant taste and odor to drinking water.

With increased public awareness of contaminants in drinking water and growing evidence that the public associates off-tastes and odors with the presence of harmful contaminants, water providers are increasingly looking to remove T&O. T&O-causing contaminants such as MIB and geosmin are difficult to remove with conventional technologies. Cornwall, Ontario is an example where activated carbon was unable to remove sufficient quantities of geosmin and MIB. The installation of TrojanUVSwift™ECT systems allowed the plant to meet disinfection requirements and remove seasonal taste and odor compounds.

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