Thank you for visiting nature.com. You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain
the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in
Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles
Wastewater from agricultural and industrial use contains potentially hazardous contaminants like industrial dyes, pharmaceuticals and heavy metals. Treating this water to make it safe for disposal is vital to environmental pollution, and research is ongoing into new methods and techonologies for water treatment. Research also continues into desalination technologies to improve access to potable water.