Management of radioactivity in drinking-water WHO 2018
ID 16242 | 28.03.2022
This guidance on radiological aspects of drinking-water quality is written in the format of Q&As. Each question and associated answer is written to be largely stand-alone with links to other Q&As that provide additional relevant information; there is no need to read the document from start to finish.
The document is divided into four sections:
- Section 1 on non-emergency situations provides background information on the GDWQ, explains the approach adopted by WHO to assess the public health risks from radionuclides in drinking-water and aspects to support their management in these situations. Information on radon, including the assessment and management of risks, is provided in a separate section, as the assessment and management approach for radon is distinct compared to the other radionuclides.
- Section 2 on emergency situations provides similar information included in the non-emergency section, but within an emergency context.
- Section 3 provides supporting information that is largely common to both non-emergency and emergency situations, including information on treatment and analytical methods.
- Section 4 includes case studies illustrating how some countries have managed radioactivity in drinking-water.
The document also includes an Annex to support calculation of doses and guidance levels for specific non-emergency situations. For non-emergency situations, it is anticipated that the reader will use this guidance in conjunction with Chapter 9 of the GDWQ (WHO, 2017a); however, some information in the GDWQ is summarized within this guidance for convenience, to support practical implementation.