10th International Symposium On Wetland Pollutant Dynamics and Control (Wetpol 2023). Brügge 11.09.2023

Miehe, U. , Stapf, M. , Seis, W. (2023): Water reuse in agriculture: Exploiting synergies with the German national micropollutant strategy.

Water Reuse Europe. Agricultural water reuse in Europe: status, challenges and opportunities for further growth. Webinar 2023


Norovirus infections are among the major causes of acute gastroenteritis worldwide. In Germany, norovirus infections are the most frequently reported cause of gastroenteritis, although only laboratory confirmed cases are officially counted. The high infectivity and environmental persistence of norovirus, makes the virus a relevant pathogen for water related infections. In the 2017 guidelines for potable water reuse, the World Health Organization proposes Norovirus as a reference pathogen for viral pathogens for quantitative microbial risk assessment (QMRA). A challenge for QMRA is, that norovirus data are rarely available over long monitoring periods to assess inter-annual variability of the associated health risk, raising the question about the relevance of this source of variability regarding potential risk management alternatives. Moreover, norovirus infections show high prevalence during winter and early spring and lower incidence during summer. Therefore, our objective is to derive risk scenarios for assessing the potential relevance of the within and between year variability of norovirus concentrations in municipal wastewater for the assessment of health risks of fieldworkers, if treated wastewater is used for irrigation in agriculture. To this end, we use the correlation between norovirus influent concentration and reported epidemiological incidence (R²=0.93), found at a large city in Germany. Risk scenarios are subsequently derived from long-term reported epidemiological data, by applying a Bayesian regression approach. For assessing the practical relevance for wastewater reuse we apply the risk scenarios to different irrigation patterns under various treatment options, namely “status-quo” and “irrigation on demand”. While status-quo refers to an almost all-year irrigation, the latter assumes that irrigation only takes place during the vegetation period from May - September. Our results indicate that the log-difference of infection risks between scenarios may vary between 0.8 and 1.7 log given the same level of pre-treatment. They also indicate that under the same exposure scenario the between-year variability of norovirus infection risk may be > 1log, which makes it a relevant factor to consider in future QMRA studies and studies which aim at evaluating safe water reuse applications. The predictive power and wider use of epidemiological data as a suitable predictor variable should be further validated with paired multi-year data.


Die Simulationsergebnisse mit SIMBA# zeigten, dass mit den neu entwickelten ammoniumbasierten Regelungen und dem Air-Cycling-Konzept für MBR die Belüftung bzw. den Energieverbrauch deutlich reduziert werden konnte.An der Pilotanlage wurde demonstriert, dass mit den optimierten MSR-Konzepten stabile Ablaufwerte von CSB und Stickstoff erzielt werden können, welche mit großen Energieeinsparungen verbunden sind. Getestet wurden die ammoniumbasierten Regelungen und das Air-Cycling. Aber auch angepasste alternative MSR-Konzepte zur Optimierung der Schlammrezirkulation auf Basis der Nitratkonzentration im Ablauf und der Redoxpotential-basierten Regelung für die Belüftung der Nitrifikation wurden optimiert und getestet. Auch hier konnten sehr gute Ablaufergebnisse erzielt werden in Verbindung mit Energieeinsparungen. Allerdings wurde auch festgestellt, dass die verwendete ionenselektive Elektrode für die kontinuierliche Messung von Ammonium im Ablauf im niedrigen Messbereich (1-2 mg/L NH4-N) keine zuverlässigen Daten für eine Steuerung liefern kann.Im Rahmen des Projektes wurde auch ein neues Vorhersagemodell für Membranfouling entwickelt, um das Fouling 7 bis 14 Tage im Voraus zuverlässig vorherzusagen. Das Modell wurde dabei sowohl mit den historischen Betriebsdaten validiert und auch in der Praxis an der Pilotanlage getestet und bestätigt. Zusätzlich wurde ein Entscheidungsunterstützungs-system erarbeitet, welche die Fehlersuche und Wartung deutlich erleichtert.


ULTIMATE aims to showcase circular economy solutions at nine case studies distributed across Europe and Israel for the treatment of industrial wastewater in order to recover water, material and energy. In this frame, 15 laboratory and preparatory experiments and investigations of existing systems are conducted to test the ULTIMATE approaches and based on them, 21 pilot plants are developed and will be demonstrated at the case studies.

Deliverable D1.2 is a demonstrator type deliverable and shows, that the ULTIMATE pilot plants are operational. To document the status for each case study, a presentation containing pictures and/or videos of the operational pilot plant is accessible on the ULTIMATE webpage ( This document accompanies the presentations which are meant to be the main evidence for D1.2 and shows the progress until M24.

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