Survey monitoring results on the reduction of micropollutants, bacteria, bacteriophages and TSS in retention soil filters

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A main source of surface water pollution in Western Europe stems from combined sewer overflow. One of the few technologies available to reduce this pollution is the retention soil filter. In this research project, we evaluated the cleaning efficiency of retention soil filters measuring the concentration ratio of standard wastewater parameters and bacteria according to factors limiting efficiency, such as long dry phases or phases of long-lasting retention. Furthermore, we conducted an initial investigation on how well retention soil filters reduce certain micropollutants on large-scale plants. There was little precipitation during the 1-year sampling phase, which led to fewer samples than expected. Nevertheless, we could verify how efficiently retention soil filters clean total suspended solids. Our results show that retention soil filters are not only able to eliminate bacteria, but also to retain some of the micropollutants investigated here. As the filters were able to reduce diclofenac, bisphenol A and metoprolol by a median rate of almost 75%, we think that further investigations should be made into the reduction processes in the filter. At this point, a higher accuracy in the results could be achieved by conducting bench-scale experiments.

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