The ocean is the vast body of salt water that covers over 70% of the earth’s surface. There are also subdivisions of this body, which can be referred to as separate entities using the word “ocean” as with the Pacific Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, Indian Ocean, etc.

Organic Contaminant

Contaminant refers to all the bad things in drinking water, including man-made chemicals. The term organic contaminant specifically refers to naturally occurring contaminants, such as debris or even Manganese, that are bad for human health.


An organism is any individual entity that exhibits the properties of life. You’re an organism, your dog is an organism, and those creepy little single-cell prokaryotes are organisms.


For the sake of keeping this glossary under a thousand pages, here is a simple definition. Osmosis is the tendency of a fluid, usually water, to pass through a semi-permeable membrane into a solution where the concentration is higher. Water tends to dilute (water down) the concentrated side until the fluid on both sides is equally concentrated.

Terms You Should Know

  • Raw Water

    When water is called “raw” it is untreated – simply meaning no removal of contaminants, bacteria, parasites, etc.  A common new trend in the US, drinking raw water... Raw Water

  • Algal Bloom

    When an algae population grows rapidly, causing the water to be discolored, it is called an algal bloom. Some algal blooms produce toxins, while non-toxic blooms can be just... Algal Bloom

  • NSF International

    NSF International is actually not an abbreviation, but a stand-alone term. While NSF used to stand for National Sanitation Foundation, it was officially changed to... NSF International

  • Point Of Use Filter

    A point of use, or POU, filter purifies water at the point where water is actually used. Whether at your kitchen faucet, a refrigerator dispenser, or your shower head, a... Point Of Use Filter

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