News archive

November 12, 2018

November 12, 2018Michael 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.

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November 8, 2018

November 8, 2018It 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.

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November 6, 2018

November 6, 2018Bits 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.

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October 30, 2018

October 30, 2018Probiotics – live bacteria with beneficial effects on human health – are believed to hold out great promise for certain therapeutic applications. But do these bacteria remain viable when they are frozen or freeze-dried for storage? Eawag’s expertise in drinking water microbiology enabled to it provide valuable support for a study of gut microbes carried out in the Food Biotechnology Laboratory at ETH Zurich.

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October 24, 2018

October 24, 2018Yesterday, the Ecotox Centre Eawag-EPFL celebrated its tenth anniversary in the City Hall of Berne. Around 80 guests from politics, administration, science, and practice toasted the successful establishment of the Centre and the milestones achieved over the past 10 years.

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October 22, 2018

October 22, 2018Even though the water we’ve used for washing our hands is barely contaminated, it usually disappears down the drain, never to be used again. A newly developed system allows handwashing water to be recycled, thus not only saving water, but also helping to prevent infectious diseases in developing countries.

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October 18, 2018

October 18, 2018Species-rich ecosystems are more resistant to disturbances such as droughts, heatwaves or pesticide inputs – that, at least, is the view widely held by scientists and non-scientists alike. In fact, the situation is more complex, as ecologists from Eawag and Zurich University have now discovered. Under certain environmental conditions, increased species diversity can also lead to an ecosystem becoming more unstable.

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October 15, 2018

October 15, 2018Global trade is saving water on balance. In principle, this is a good thing. However, the water budget has its dark side – a fact which Eawag researchers have now brought to light.

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October 11, 2018

October 11, 2018Mountain rivers swollen by heavy rainfall deposit large amounts of sediment in reservoirs. To prevent the loss of storage capacity, some reservoirs are equipped with bypass tunnels which convey sediment-laden waters to downstream reaches. The fact that such tunnels offer ecological benefits as well as economic advantages was shown, for example, by a study carried out on the Solis reservoir in Graubünden.

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October 4, 2018

October 4, 2018When does the poisonous blue alga reach its critical point and how does the lake react to heat waves? In the future, satellite pictures will answer these questions in real time. This is demonstrated by an Eawag researcher’s new dataset. 

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