News archive

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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