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Water Sources and Their Protection from the Impact of Microbial Contamination in Rural Areas of Beijing, China

1
Institute of Geographical Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
2
Institute of Environmental Health and Related Product Safety, Beijing 100021, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(3), 879-891; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10030879
Received: 31 December 2012 / Revised: 25 February 2013 / Accepted: 26 February 2013 / Published: 5 March 2013
Bacterial contamination of drinking water is a major public health problem in rural China. To explore bacterial contamination in rural areas of Beijing and identify possible causes of bacteria in drinking water samples, water samples were collected from wells in ten rural districts of Beijing, China. Total bacterial count, total coliforms and Escherichia coli in drinking water were then determined and water source and wellhead protection were investigated. The bacterial contamination in drinking water was serious in areas north of Beijing, with the total bacterial count, total coliforms and Escherichia coli in some water samples reaching 88,000 CFU/mL, 1,600 MPN/100 mL and 1,600 MPN/100 mL, respectively. Water source types, well depth, whether the well was adequately sealed and housed, and whether wellhead is above or below ground were the main factors influencing bacterial contamination levels in drinking water. The bacterial contamination was serious in the water of shallow wells and wells that were not closed, had no well housing or had a wellhead below ground level. The contamination sources around wells, including village dry toilets and livestock farms, were well correlated with bacterial contamination. Total bacterial counts were affected by proximity to sewage ditches and polluting industries, however, proximity to landfills did not influence the microbial indicators. View Full-Text
Keywords: drinking water; bacterial contamination; influencing factors drinking water; bacterial contamination; influencing factors
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Ye, B.; Yang, L.; Li, Y.; Wang, W.; Li, H. Water Sources and Their Protection from the Impact of Microbial Contamination in Rural Areas of Beijing, China. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10, 879-891.

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