News Portal

May 28, 2020

Around 500 different cichlid species are found in Lake Victoria. According to a study by scientists at Eawag and Bern University, whether closely related species can persist within the same area depends on the effect sizes of individual genes underlying key mate-choice traits.

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May 25, 2020

126 Swiss researchers, including 6 from Eawag, want to draw the attention their Swiss compatriots to the scientific evidence showing the link between the emergence of pandemics and human disturbance of the natural environment.

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May 21, 2020

Many experts describe the health effects of drinking water contaminated with toxic concentrations of arsenic as the greatest mass poisoning in human history. A risk model developed by Eawag researcher Joel Podgorski now shows that up to 220 million people worldwide could be affected.

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May 20, 2020

To mark this year’s International Day for Biological Diversity on 22 May, professor Catherine Graham and professor Florian Altermatt explain in an interview why it is important in biodiversity research to look beyond systemic boundaries. The two scientists lead the joint research initiative “Blue-Green Biodiversity” between WSL and Eawag.

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May 18, 2020

To protect ecosystems, it is important to understand how environmental disturbances, such as forest fires or hurricanes, affect nature. A study by Eawag and the University of Zurich now shows how their frequency and intensity affect small and large organisms. Accordingly, large species are more affected by disturbances than small species, and this influences the size distribution within ecological communities.

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May 14, 2020

In order to increase the permeability of the rock for applications such as the use of geothermal energy, rock is artificially broken. Until now, there was a lack of methods to track this process in the field in real time. Thanks to a new technique, this gap can now be closed, as a study by Eawag and ETH Zurich shows.

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May 12, 2020

Every year, the Swiss National Science Foundation launches a photography competition to select the best images from the world of science. In the category "The Research Project" the collage of a joint research project of Eawag and the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute was recognized.

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May 11, 2020

How can water supply and wastewater disposal be provided flexibly and efficiently, especially in rapidly growing cities? A new research agenda formulates open questions from a technical, social and transformative perspective. It stresses the importance of transdisciplinary cooperation between research, policy and practice to promote innovation in the water sector.

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May 8, 2020

In many places in Switzerland, rivers, streams and lakeshores are being restored. The new practice documentation “Evaluating the outcome of restoration projects” by Eawag and FOEN provides the basis for joint learning across project boundaries.

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May 7, 2020

There is a flip side to the annoying blankets of pollen found on cars, garden furniture and other surfaces: when it comes to satellite images, pollen on lakes reveals currents that are otherwise only visible in computer models. This makes the waterbody researchers and remote sensing experts very happy.

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April 30, 2020

The novel coronavirus has been successfully detected in wastewater – even at low concentrations, in samples collected at an early stage of the outbreak. Researchers at EPFL and Eawag are now working to optimise the method. The aim is to develop a system which could warn of a resurgence of cases earlier than clinical diagnostic tests.

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April 28, 2020

The active ingredient diclofenac contained in various painkillers is hardly degraded at all in wastewater treatment plants and therefore accumulates in surface waters. There, amphipods convert diclofenac into a more toxic substance, namely diclofenac methyl ester, as shown in a study by the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology (Eawag).

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April 24, 2020

ABCD: All continents, balanced gender, low carbon transport and diverse backgrounds. These criteria should shape the scientific conferences of the future. 

 

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April 14, 2020

Tremendous research efforts have been dedicated over the last two decades to better understand the sources and distribution of arsenic-polluted groundwater. Now, an international research team with the involvement of Eawag have used reactive transport modelling to integrate much of what has been learned into computer simulations that mimic the complex interactions between groundwater flow, solute transport and geochemical reaction mechanisms.

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April 9, 2020

With its research, Eawag is committed to a sustainable future and to achieving the SDGs. This is illustrated, among other things, by the diverse and exciting projects that we present to you in the 2019 Annual Report.

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April 8, 2020

Martijn Kuller is part of the FANFAR Horizon 2020 Project, funded by the EU, to address flood challenges in West Africa. Flooding is a rapidly growing concern in this part of the world, in recent years several floods have occurred with severe consequences. In an interview, Martijn talks about his experiences in establishing an early warning system for West Africa.

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April 7, 2020

The spatial requirements for surface waters specified in the Waters Protection Act represent the absolute minimum required to safeguard their ecological functions. The space provided along small streams is of particular importance, as material flows between terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems are not dependent on the width of the watercourse. This is shown by Eawag’s own investigations – and by a review of available studies, which was cited by the Federal Supreme Court in a recent ruling.

 

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April 3, 2020

Researchers want to make use of the fact that coronaviruses excreted by infected individuals can be found in wastewater. If the viruses can be detected successfully, this may provide a much faster way of spotting a wave of infections than via testing of symptomatic individuals. To find out more, we interviewed Eawag researcher Christoph Ort.

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March 31, 2020

Using a simple but ingenious strategy, a research team has successfully demonstrated how water quality downstream of wastewater treatment plants is influenced by a single pharmaceutical manufacturing site: as variations in the concentrations of compounds over time are dependent on production cycles, it is possible to distinguish between industrial and household emissions – even a long way downstream.

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March 24, 2020

Contaminated waste water often flows into rivers and streams after heavy rains. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria thus also enter the waters. Eawag is researching exactly which ones and in what amounts as part of a national research programme.

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March 19, 2020

The theme to this year’s UNESCO World Water Day is “Water and Climate Change”. Environmental scientist Martin Schmid, who is Head of the Eawag Group Applied System Analysis in the Surface Waters Department, talks about how climate change is impacting on waterbodies in Switzerland.

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March 13, 2020

The ETH Board is strengthening the interdisciplinary biodiversity research of WSL and Eawag in order to find answers to the urgent social challenges of species loss as quickly as possible.

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March 12, 2020

Host and parasites are often engaged in an evolutionary arms race. Researchers at Eawag have intervened in this warring relationship and demonstrated how it can be used to improve biological pest control.

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March 10, 2020

In the project "LeCo - "Legionella control in buildings", a number of research groups have joined to tackle the legionella issue in a wide-ranging, multidisciplinary research project. Project leader Frederik Hammes explains why this is so important.

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March 3, 2020

Inhalation of legionella bacteria – which thrive in warm water – can cause illness: in a new project, an Eawag-led multidisciplinary research team is investigating how the risks associated with these bacteria can best be managed.

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