Eutrophication


Eutrophication or hypertrophication, is when a body of water becomes overly enriched with minerals and nutrients that induce excessive growth of plants and algae. This process may result in oxygen depletion of the water body.
  • Abundance of particulate substances (phytoplankton, zooplankton, bacteria, fungi and debris) that determine the turbidity and colouration of the water;
  • Abundance of inorganic chemicals such as ammonia, nitrites, hydrogen sulphide etc. that in the drinking water treatment plants induce the formation of harmful substances such as nitrosamines suspected of mutagenicity;
  • Abundance of organic substances that give the water disagreeable odours or tastes, barely masked by chlorination in the case of drinking water. These substances, moreover, form complex chemical compounds that prevent normal purification processes and are deposited on the walls of the water purifier inlet tubes, accelerating corrosion and limiting the flow rate;UPSC Prelims 2024 dynamic test series
  • The water acquires disagreeable odours or tastes (of earth, of rotten fish, of cloves, of watermelon, etc.) due to the presence of particular algae;
  • Disappearance or significant reduction of quality fish with very negative effects on fishing (instead of quality species such as trout undesirable ones such as carp become established) and ocean acidification;
  • Possible affirmation of toxic algae with potential damage to the population and animals drinking the affected water;
  • Prohibition of touristic use of the lake and bathing, due to both the foul odour on the shores caused by the presence of certain algae, as well as the turbidity and anything but clean and attractive appearance of the water; bathing is dangerous because certain algae cause skin irritation;
  • Reduction of oxygen concentration, especially in the deeper layers of the lake at the end of summer and in autumn.

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