VOC concentration in Taiwan's household drinking water

H. W. Kuo, T. F. Chiang, I. I. Lo, J. S. Lai, C. C. Chan, J. D. Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


The objective of this study is to analyze volatile organic compound (VOC) concentrations in Taiwan's drinking water supply. Focusing on Taiwan's three major metropolitan areas - Taipei, Taichung and Kaohsiung (in the north, middle and south, respectively) - 171 samples were taken from tap water and 68 from boiled water. Tests showed VOC concentrations were highest in Kaohsiung. This is due to different water sources and methods of treatment. Except for bromoform, trihalomethane (THM) concentrations were highest. Detection rates of toluene and 1,2-dichloroethane were slightly higher than other VOC compounds. VOC concentrations decreased significantly after water was boiled. THMs had a removal rate from 61% to 82%. The authors conclude that the three metropolitan areas contain significantly different levels of VOCs and that boiling can significantly reduce the presence of VOCs. Other sources of pollution that contaminate drinking water such as industrial plants and gas stations must be further investigated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-47
Number of pages7
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 1997 Dec 3

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution


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