EcoImpact 2.0 focuses on the previously observed development of periphyton tolerance as MP-related biological responses in the receiving waters. The ultimate goals are to examine how to use PICT for a comparative assessment of the biological effects of treatment technologies, and whether PICT could be established as a water quality assessment tool in practice.
We will experimentally address the following four research questions:
Q1. Can we observe PICT in periphyton growing in experimental flumes that are treated with WWTP effluents?
Q2. Is the observed PICT in periphyton downstream from WWTPs driven by MP exposure or by the release of tolerant microorganisms from the WWTP or a combination of both?
Q3. To which degree do different (combinations of) advanced WW treatment technologies affect tolerance development to MPs in periphyton?
Q4. What is the potential role of PICT for future monitoring to assess the biological effects of upgrading WWTPs?