Pollutants

Ways to reduce pollution

Thousands of chemical substances end up in the aquatic environment, either by direct or indirect means. Some of these chemicals – hormones for example – have an effect on aquatic organisms, with far-reaching consequences. The water treatment plants cannot remove all of the pollutants from the wastewater. Eawag researches amongst other issues how supplementary measures in water treatment plants  affect biodiversity.

News

March 30, 2021

Ecotoxicological tests need to be extremely accurate – which often poses challenges in research and practice. Eawag has now developed a computer model that enables even more accurate testing at high throughput; the model is simple, widely applicable and saves resources.

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March 25, 2021

In the latest NEST podcast with Peter Richner, Tove Larsen talks about what we flush down the toilet, why problems should be solved at the source and why wastewater doesn't lie.

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Scientific publications

Desiante, W. L.; Minas, N. S.; Fenner, K. (2021) Micropollutant biotransformation and bioaccumulation in natural stream biofilms, Water Research, 193, 116846 (11 pp.), doi:10.1016/j.watres.2021.116846, Institutional Repository
Lee, J.; Ju, F.; Maile-Moskowitz, A.; Beck, K.; Maccagnan, A.; McArdell, C. S.; Dal Molin, M.; Fenicia, F.; Vikesland, P.; Pruden, A.; Stamm, C.; Bürgmann, H. (2021) Unraveling the riverine antibiotic resistome: the downstream fate of anthropogenic inputs, Water Research, 197, 117050 (12 pp.), doi:10.1016/j.watres.2021.117050, Institutional Repository
Remke, S. C.; von Gunten, U.; Canonica, S. (2021) Enhanced transformation of aquatic organic compounds by long-lived photooxidants (LLPO) produced from dissolved organic matter, Water Research, 190, 116707 (10 pp.), doi:10.1016/j.watres.2020.116707, Institutional Repository
Schreiner, V. C.; Link, M.; Kunz, S.; Szöcs, E.; Scharmüller, A.; Vogler, B.; Beck, B.; Battes, K. P.; Cimpean, M.; Singer, H. P.; Hollender, J.; Schäfer, R. B. (2021) Paradise lost? Pesticide pollution in a European region with considerable amount of traditional agriculture, Water Research, 188, 116528 (10 pp.), doi:10.1016/j.watres.2020.116528, Institutional Repository
Glodowska, M.; Stopelli, E.; Straub, D.; Vu Thi, D.; Trang, P. T. K.; Viet, P. H.; AdvectAs team members; Berg, M.; Kappler, A.; Kleindienst, S. (2021) Arsenic behavior in groundwater in Hanoi (Vietnam) influenced by a complex biogeochemical network of iron, methane, and sulfur cycling, Journal of Hazardous Materials, 407, 124398 (15 pp.), doi:10.1016/j.jhazmat.2020.124398, Institutional Repository
To the library

Publications for practitioners

Comments on the amendment of the Water Protection Ordinance, 11-2017 [German]

Report: Chemical Pollution in Low-and Middle-Income Countries

Fact sheet: Frequently asked questions about road salting [available German and French]

Micro plastics in the environment
[available German and French]

Fact Sheet: on agricultural pesticides in rivers, lakes and groundwater [available German and French]

Fact Sheet: What’s the difference between monitoring values (EQS) and authorisation values (RAC)? [available German and French]

Selected research projects

EcoImpact is an Eawag-wide interdisciplinary research effort, strongly motivated by the planned modifications of the Swiss wastewater treatment plants.
Comprehensive monitoring of organic trace substances in surface waters is time-consuming and costly. The NAWA SPEZ project delivers data and analyses on the status of water pollution.

Experts

Prof. Dr. Michael Berg
  • inorganic contaminants
  • arsenic
  • geogenic contaminants
  • groundwater
  • surface water
  • drinking water
Dr. Carmen Casado-Martinez
  • aquatic ecotoxicology
  • ecotoxicology
  • sediments
Dr. Nathalie Dubois
  • chromatography
  • isotopes
  • surface water
  • sediments
  • biomarker
Prof. Dr. Rik Eggen
  • aquatic ecotoxicology
  • micropollutants
  • surface water
Prof. Dr. Kathrin Fenner
  • biological degradation
  • mass spectrometry
  • micropollutants
  • organic pollutants
Dr. Benoit Ferrari
  • micropollutants
  • ecotoxicology
Dr. Ksenia Groh
  • molecular ecotoxicology
  • aquatic ecotoxicology
  • proteomics
  • micropollutants
  • endocrine disruptors
  • bioanalytics
PD Dr. Thomas Hofstetter
  • isotopes
  • micropollutants
Prof. Dr. Juliane Hollender
  • wastewater
  • biological degradation
Dr. Elisabeth Janssen
  • photochemistry
  • proteomics
  • organic pollutants
  • natural waters
  • analytical chemistry
Dr. Marion Junghans
  • algae
  • aquatic ecotoxicology
  • micropollutants
  • ecotoxicology
Dr. Ralf Kägi
  • nanoparticles
Dr. Cornelia Kienle
  • aquatic ecotoxicology
  • ecology
  • ecotoxicology
Prof. Dr. Kristin Schirmer
  • aquatic ecotoxicology
  • micropollutants
  • molecular ecotoxicology
  • nanoparticles
  • ecotoxicology
  • cellular ecotoxicology
Dr. Martin Schmid
  • modeling
  • surface water
  • hydropower
Heinz Singer
  • surface water
  • organic pollutants
Dr. Christian Stamm
  • micropollutants
Dr. Etienne Vermeirssen
  • aquatic ecotoxicology
  • ecotoxicology
  • sediments
Dr. Colette vom Berg
  • fish
  • molecular ecotoxicology
Prof. Dr. Bernhard Wehrli
  • river restoration
  • hydrogeology
  • surface water
  • sediments
Dr. Inge Werner
  • aquatic ecotoxicology
  • molecular ecotoxicology
  • ecotoxicology