Modeling trihalomethane increases associated with source water bromide contributed by coal-fired power plants in the Monongahela River Basin.

Author(s) Kolb, C.; Good, K.D.; Vanbriesen, J.M.
Journal Environ Sci Technol
Date Published 2019 Dec 17
Abstract

Increasing source water bromide concentrations are challenging for drinking water utilities since bromide contributes to the formation of disinfection byproducts (DBPs) that have negative human health effects. The present work evaluates the role of coal-fired power plant wet flue gas desulfurization (FGD)-associated bromide loads on in-stream bromide concentrations in the Monongahela River Basin in water year (WY) 1998 (during a nation-wide study) and over a five-year period from WYs 2013 through 2017. Under mean flow conditions in the lower Monongahela River for the WYs of interest, the median estimated wet FGD bromide discharges are modeled to represent a significant fraction (27-57%) of observed bromide concentrations, with the range representing the change in load conditions across WYs. Seasonal effects are predicted due to changes in the dilution capacity of the river, with elevated concentrations under lower flows in the third and fourth quarters (July through December). The effect of these bromide concentration contributions, which range from 6.8 to 23 g/L under median load estimates and median flow conditions, on trihalomethane (THM) formation and associated risk was assessed. The power plant TTHM contribution was estimated to range from 7.6 to 27 µg/L, with a median predicted risk contribution of 0.0014.

DOI 10.1021/acs.est.9b01544
ISSN 1520-5851
Citation Kolb C, Good KD, Vanbriesen JM. Modeling trihalomethane increases associated with source water bromide contributed by coal-fired power plants in the Monongahela River Basin. Environ Sci Technol. 2019.

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