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Reducing sewer corrosion through integrated urban water management

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Science  15 Aug 2014:
Vol. 345, Issue 6198, pp. 812-814
DOI: 10.1126/science.1251418

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Sourcing corrosive sewer sulfides

Sewer systems are corroding at an alarming rate, costing governments billions of dollars to replace. Differences among water treatment systems make it difficult to track down the source of corrosive sulfide responsible for this damage. Pikaar et al. performed an extensive industry survey and sampling campaign across Australia (see the Perspective by Rauch and Kleidorfer). Aluminum sulfate added as a coagulant during drinking water treatment was the primary culprit in corroding sewer systems. Modifying this common treatment strategy to include sulfate-free coagulants could dramatically reduce sewer corrosion across the globe.

Science, this issue p. 812; see also p. 734