Department Surface Waters - Research and Management

Surface Waters -
Research & Management (Surf)

We focus both on processes in the aquatic environment as well as on entire systems of natural waters.

We perform basic and applied research and several projects have a problem-oriented and interdisciplinary focus, including system analysis. Read more


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October 18, 2017

Compared to other foodstuffs, Switzerland’s drinking water shows low levels of contamination with antibiotic-resistant bacteria or resistance genes. This was demonstrated in a study of eight drinking water systems carried out by Eawag researchers on behalf of the Swiss Gas and Water Industry Association (SVGW) and water suppliers. Read more

October 12, 2017

According to a study funded by the Federal Office for the Environment, pesticides or transformation products can persist in soils for a decade or more. In the study, Eawag and Agroscope scientists analysed topsoil samples collected from 14 agricultural sites between 1995 and 2008 as part of the Swiss Soil Monitoring Network programme.  Read more

Latest Publications

Sommer, T.; Danza, F.; Berg, J.; Sengupta, A.; Constantinescu, G.; Tokyay, T.; Bürgmann, H.; Dressler, Y.; Sepúlveda Steiner, O.; Schubert, C. J.; Tonolla, M.; Wüest, A. (2017) Bacteria-induced mixing in natural waters, Geophysical Research Letters, 44(18), 9424-9432, doi:10.1002/2017GL074868, Institutional Repository
Vikesland, P. J.; Pruden, A.; Alvarez, P. J. J.; Aga, D. S.; Buergmann, H.; Li, X.; Manaia, C. M.; Nambi, I. M.; Wigginton, K. R.; Zhang, T.; Zhu, Y.-G. (2017) Towards a comprehensive strategy to mitigate dissemination of environmental sources of antibiotic resistance, Environmental Science and Technology, xx, doi:10.1021/acs.est.7b03623, Institutional Repository
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Research Projects

The intricacies of Lake Kivu and of the methane stored in its deep waters could easily keep an entire research institute busy. Our research aims at creating the knowledge needed to support a sustainable and safe exploitation of the methane resource.
Wastewater is a source of antibiotic resistant bacteria. We study their dissemination in the aquatic environment, and strategies to remove them.
Drilliing sediment cores (~600.000 years) from the highly alkaline Lake Van in Anatolia to reveal the climate history.
Lakes store large amounts of heat. To what extent can this heat be used to replace the use of fossil fuels or electricity for heating and cooling purposes?