HS2.3.5 EDI

The occurrence of pathogens and an exponentially increasing number of contaminants in freshwater and estuary environments pose a serious problem to public health. This problem is likely to increase in the future due to more frequent and intense storm events, the intensification of agriculture, population growth and urbanization. Pathogens (e.g., pathogenic bacteria and viruses) are introduced into surface water through the direct discharge of wastewater, or by the release from animal manure or animal waste via overland flow or groundwater, which subsequently presents potential risks of infection when used for drinking, recreation or irrigation. Contaminants of emerging concern are released as diffuse sources from anthropogenic activities or as discharges from wastewater treatment plants (e.g., trace organic contaminants). So far, the sources, pathways and transport mechanisms of fecal indicators, pathogens and emerging contaminants in water environments are poorly understood, and thus we lack a solid basis for quantitative risk assessment and selection of best mitigation measures. Innovative, interdisciplinary approaches are needed to advance this field of research. In particular, there is a need to better understand the dominant processes controlling fecal indicator, pathogen and contaminant fate and transport at larger scales. Consequently, we welcome contributions that aim to close these knowledge gaps and include both small and large-scale experimental and modelling studies with a focus on:
- The development and application of novel experimental and analytical methods to investigate fate and transport of fecal indicators, pathogens and emerging contaminants in rivers, groundwater and estuaries
- Hydrological, physically based modelling approaches
- Methods for identifying the dominant processes and for transferring fecal indicator, pathogen and contaminant transport parameters from the laboratory to the field or catchment scale
- Investigations of the implications of contamination of water resources for water safety management planning and risk assessment frameworks

Convener: Julia Derx | Co-conveners: Fulvio Boano, Jennifer DrummondECSECS, Margaret StevensonECSECS

The occurrence of pathogens and an exponentially increasing number of contaminants in freshwater and estuary environments pose a serious problem to public health. This problem is likely to increase in the future due to more frequent and intense storm events, the intensification of agriculture, population growth and urbanization. Pathogens (e.g., pathogenic bacteria and viruses) are introduced into surface water through the direct discharge of wastewater, or by the release from animal manure or animal waste via overland flow or groundwater, which subsequently presents potential risks of infection when used for drinking, recreation or irrigation. Contaminants of emerging concern are released as diffuse sources from anthropogenic activities or as discharges from wastewater treatment plants (e.g., trace organic contaminants). So far, the sources, pathways and transport mechanisms of fecal indicators, pathogens and emerging contaminants in water environments are poorly understood, and thus we lack a solid basis for quantitative risk assessment and selection of best mitigation measures. Innovative, interdisciplinary approaches are needed to advance this field of research. In particular, there is a need to better understand the dominant processes controlling fecal indicator, pathogen and contaminant fate and transport at larger scales. Consequently, we welcome contributions that aim to close these knowledge gaps and include both small and large-scale experimental and modelling studies with a focus on:
- The development and application of novel experimental and analytical methods to investigate fate and transport of fecal indicators, pathogens and emerging contaminants in rivers, groundwater and estuaries
- Hydrological, physically based modelling approaches
- Methods for identifying the dominant processes and for transferring fecal indicator, pathogen and contaminant transport parameters from the laboratory to the field or catchment scale
- Investigations of the implications of contamination of water resources for water safety management planning and risk assessment frameworks