Wastewater treatment plants can ‘catch a cold’

The efficient running of wastewater treatment plants is an essential part of modern society. Just like humans, wastewater treatment plants can get sick, due to viral attacks. Now, new research reveals the implications for the surrounding environment in case the plant catches a cold. From the study, the researchers have shown there is a clear relationship between virus concentration and the amount of dissolved organic carbon present in the effluent water. More of this carbon in the effluent water, means increased oxygen consumption in the surrounding bodies of water where the effluent is discharged. This could have potential negative impacts on the aquatic ecosystems nearby.The efficient running of wastewater treatment plants is an essential part of modern society. Just like humans, wastewater treatment plants can get sick, due to viral attacks. Now, new research reveals the implications for the surrounding environment in case the plant catches a cold. From the study, the researchers have shown there is a clear relationship between virus concentration and the amount of dissolved organic carbon present in the effluent water. More of this carbon in the effluent water, means increased oxygen consumption in the surrounding bodies of water where the effluent is discharged. This could have potential negative impacts on the aquatic ecosystems nearby.

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