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The black soldier fly. (Photo: Sandec/Eawag)
February 19, 2019

The larvae of black soldier flies feed on organic waste matter. This has the potential not only to alleviate the waste problem in many countries, but also cut greenhouse gas emissions from waste disposal by around half. Read more

Dry period at the Klöntalersee: dryness and regional water scarcity were a recurring hot topic in the media in summer 2018. (Photo: Pixabay)
February 14, 2019

A study by environmental social scientist Mario Angst shows that reports in the media do not always reflect the issues that most concern organisations, public sector agencies, cantons and communities on a day-to-day basis.  Read more

The research station on the Jungfraujoch, where researchers collected rainwater every week for two years. (Image: flickr)
February 11, 2019

Selenium is a difficult mineral to research, as it has a complex chemistry and is only found in the environment in the tiniest amounts. However, scientists at Eawag and ETH Zurich have now developed new methods of chemical analysis that, when combined with atmospheric models, allow assumptions to be made for the first time on the origins of selenium. Read more

A restored reach of the Emme in the Bernese Oberland (Photo: Markus Bolliger, Shutterstock)
February 8, 2019

In the coming decades, many rivers in Switzerland are to be restored to a natural state. To identify those river reaches where restoration would be ecologically most valuable, Eawag scientists have developed a new assessment procedure. Read more

Researcher Denise Mitrano works in the laboratory of the ETH Institute for Chemical and Bioengineering during the synthesis of nano-size plastic particles with a minute amount of palladium. (Photo: Andri Bryner, Eawag)
February 4, 2019

More than 98% of the smallest plastic particles from sewers are retained in sludge. Researchers have been able to prove this by incorporating the precious metal palladium as a tracer in artificial nanoplastics. This innovative method has great potential for keeping track of the behaviour of nanoplastics in technical systems as well as in environmental situations. Read more

The FE tunnel. Visible in the foreground is a waste canister which, thanks to an integrated heating element, mimics the thermal behaviour of a future canister containing spent fuel. (Photo: Nagra)
January 31, 2019

In collaboration with Nagra and Bern University, Eawag scientists have studied the gas dynamics in an experimental tunnel simulating the disposal of radioactive waste. While some of the findings are surprising, the overall safety assessment is positive. Read more

Federal councillor Guy Parmelin at the presentation of the Aquascope underwater microscope by Dr. Francesco Pomati (Photo: Simone Kral)
January 24, 2019

“Innovation from Switzerland, for Switzerland” is the theme of a special feature at this year’s World Economic Forum, where Eawag, as part of the ETH Domain will have the opportunity to discuss and share ideas with guests from the Swiss political arena as well as from the public and private sectors. Read more

Florian Altermatt and doctoral student Elvira Mächler take water samples in Chriesbach
January 24, 2019

The Swiss Academy of Sciences (SCNAT) has appointed Florian Altermatt President of the Biodiversity Forum as of January 2019. Previously he held the office of Vice President. The biologist heads the "Spatial Dynamics" research group at Eawag and holds an associate professorship in Aquatic Ecology at the University of Zurich. Read more

Christoph Lüthi at his TedTalk in Munich (Source: TedX München)
January 22, 2019

3 billion people worldwide live in cities without sewers or wastewater treatment plant infrastructure. This forces them to dump their waste into open waters, contaminating the drinking water for others downstream. Christoph Lüthi shows how we could harness nutrients in wastewater instead of harming human and environmental health. Read more

Also included in the study: River in Ecuador. (Photo: Scott Tiegs)
January 15, 2019

Climate factors determine the carbon cycles of river ecosystems. These factors are increasingly influenced by humans. A large-scale study is now for the first time showing globally comparable patterns and thus providing a basis for future assessment of the consequences of climate change.  Read more

January 10, 2019

On 10 January 2019, the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) will award the renowned Swiss "Watt d'Or" energy prize for the twelfth time. Among the five winners is the NEST research and innovation building by Empa and Eawag. In its decision, the jury put a particular emphasis on the "Solar Fitness & Wellness" unit. Read more

Photo: Pixabay
December 19, 2018

Making environment-related decisions can be a complex business. A wide range of stakeholders need to be co-opted, different options need to be assessed and the impacts and consequences estimated. In order to also include the opinions of the wider public, Eawag has developed a new app that features elements of gaming. Read more

Jeder Rappen zählt
December 14, 2018

Eawag is taking part in the SRF and Swiss Solidarity’s (Glückskette) fundraising campaign “Jeder Rappen zählt”. The Water Wall – a self-sufficient handwashing unit and part of Eawag’s Blue Diversion Autarky project, will be stationed in the grounds of the University of Lucerne (HSLU) between 16 and 21 December. Read more

December 13, 2018

Michael Berg, Stephan Hug, Annette Johnson (in memoriam), Andreas Voegelin and Lenny Winkel from the Department of Water Resources and Drinking Water (W +T) at Eawag have been selected for the “Sandmeyer Award” from the Swiss Chemical Society (SCG) for their many years of work researching contamination of drinking water resources with geogenic elements. Read more

While wastewater treatment essentially represents a barrier to the spread of antibiotic resistance genes, these genes are enriched in relative terms at WWTPs. (Photo: Werdhölzli WWTP)
December 12, 2018

Antibiotic resistance genes are not completely eliminated by wastewater treatment. While some resistance genes are present in the influent, many others are found in activated sludge bacteria. A recent Eawag study shows that, rather than merely passing through, resistance genes are active and evolve within treatment plants. Read more

The amphipod crustacean Gammarus pulex chewing up fallen leaves in autumn. Nicole Munz’s samples contained mostly Gammarus fossarum as well as Gammarus pulex. (Photo: Eawag)
December 3, 2018

Amphipods in Swiss waters are exposed to insecticides, pharmaceutical residues and other trace substances, and accumulate these in their bodies. However, when water-treatment plants are upgraded, practically no trace substances are found in these organisms according to a new study carried out by Eawag researchers. Read more

Reconstruction of the city of Aventicum on Lake Murten, former capital of Roman Switzerland. The picture is taken from the book “Aventicum — A Roman Capital City” by Daniel Castella et al (2015).
November 26, 2018

When a population grows quickly and farms intensively, the environment often suffers. This is not only true today, but was also the case as early as Roman times. Evidence of this has been found by Eawag researchers in sediments in Lake Murten. Read more

Wenfeng Liu received the Otto Jaag Water Protection Prize 2018 at the official ceremony on 17 November 2018.
November 21, 2018

Once again, an Eawag doctoral candidate is awarded the Otto-Jaag Water Protection Prize: Wenfeng Liu was honoured for his dissertation "Modelling Global Water-Food-Environment-Trade Nexus in the Context of Agricultural Intensification". The Otto Jaag Water Protection Prize honours outstanding dissertations and master's theses at ETH Zurich in the field of water protection and hydrology. Read more

Philipp Dermond carries out a muscle and scale test and implants a chip in the stomach cavity of an anaesthetised sea trout. The researchers will then be able to track whether the fish from the stream migrate to the sea or whether they ... (Photo: FIBER)
November 20, 2018

There’s a new face at the fishing advisory office (FIBER) in Kastanienbaum: Philip Dermond is taking over from Sébastien Nusslé and is thus the new co-director with Corinne Schmid. Philip Dermond transferred in October from the Fish Ecology and Evolution department at Eawag to FIBER. Read more

When a herd of wildebeest cross a river, not all the animals will make it to the other side. (Photo: iStock.com / Jannie_nikola)
November 16, 2018

Scientists at Eawag and Zurich University have synthesised for the first time the amounts of carbon transported between many different ecosystems. According to this global synthesis, spatial flows of carbon can be very large – and their significance has previously been underestimated. Read more

Many viruses, like the Coxsackie virus pictured above, are transmitted to humans by way of liquids. (Photo: Shutterstock)
November 13, 2018

Many infectious viruses are transferred to humans from water or other liquids. A microbiologist at Eawag has now investigated how high the risk of infection is when someone comes into contact with polluted water. Read more

Photo: Peter Penicka, Eawag
November 12, 2018

Michael Berg, head of the Eawag Water Resources and Drinking Water department, has been appointed adjunct professor with the School of Civil Engineering and Surveying at the University of Southern Queensland (USQ). His appointment is linked to becoming one of the members of the “UNESCO Chair on Groundwater Arsenic”, which is based at the USQ. Read more

Range of species used in the experimental protocol of the study on the dispersion of species. (Images: Julien Cote)
November 8, 2018

It is common among many species for individuals to move around during their lifetime in order to settle in better adapted habitats, a process known as dispersion by ecologists. In order to improve scientific predictions of the future of biodiversity in the face of global changes it is very important to understand the mechanisms of dispersion. Read more

Using tiny DNA fragments, even rare species are discovered in bodies of water (Photo: Pixabay).
November 6, 2018

Bits of genetic material in rivers make it possible to detect the organisms living in them – without having to collect these and examine them under the microscope. Researchers at Eawag, the ETH and the EPFL have now developed a computer model that with the help of single DNA measurements even simulates exactly where and how often the species are present in bodies of water. Read more

September 20, 2018

In autumn 1993, Eawag launched a series of courses under the "PEAK" brand (practice-oriented Eawag courses). Read more

Cichlids of the genus Astatotilapia in Lake Chala (Photo: Florian N. Moser)
August 24, 2018

Cichlids belong to one of the largest fish families, with new species emerging all the time. These colourful, shimmering fish evolve so fast that Eawag researchers have now been able to practically observe them in the process of their evolution. Read more

A lake overgrown with aquatic plants in Vanuatu, July 2017.
January 24, 2018

A research team from the Surface Waters Research and Management Department is investigating the earliest traces of human life in the tropical Pacific. In July 2017, the team undertook an expedition to Vanuatu in Melanesia. The researchers took sediment cores from the lakes and marshes on seven islands in order to test these for indications of the earliest human activities. Read more

Photo: Aldo Todaro
June 29, 2016

In recent decades, Swiss water protection efforts have focused on reducing nutrient inputs; today, one of the main concerns is controlling micropollutants. Read more

Fig. 1: Juvenile whitefish prior to their release from a hatchery into Lake Thun. (Photo: Emanuel Ammon, Ex-Press)
April 21, 2016

In the last century, the natural reproduction of whitefish and Arctic char in several Swiss lakes was adversely affected by high levels of nutrient inputs. So far, stocking measures have been implemented in efforts to support fish populations and maintain yields. The effectiveness of these measures varies according to the particular species and lake. Read more