IWA Publishing

Urban waste- and stormwater management in Greece: past, present and future

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Courtesy of IWA Publishing

Urban wastewater and storm management has a long history which coincides with the appearance of the first organized human settlements (ca. 3500 BC). It began in prehistoric Crete during the Early Bronze Age (ca. 3200 BC) when many remarkable developments occurred in several stages known as Minoan civilization. One of its salient characteristics was the architecture and function of its hydraulic works and especially the drainage and sewerage systems and other sanitary infrastructures in the Minoan palaces and other settlements. These technologies, although they do not give a complete picture of wastewater and stormwater technologies in ancient Greece, indicate that such technologies have been used in Greece since the Minoan times. Minoan sanitary technologies were transferred to the Greek mainland in the subsequent phases of Greek civilization, i.e. in the Mycenaean, Classical, Hellenistic, Roman, and present times. The scope of this article is the presentation and discussion of the evolution of waste- and stormwater management through the long history of Greece, focusing on the hydraulic characteristics of sanitary infrastructures. Also, the present and future trends of wastewater and stormwater management are considered. Practices achieved in prehistoric Greece may have some relevance for wastewater engineering even in modern times.

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