Microplastics in wastewater effluent

Microplastics in wastewater effluent

This project will use already developed and validated microplastics sampling and test methods to quantify plastics in wastewater effluents and the environment.

Details

Wastewater treatment effluents are known to contain tiny particles of plastic. Not visible to the human eye, these plastics can make their way into the environment through wastewater effluents. Microplastics in effluent are not currently regulated in discharge licences, however, this may change in the future. Currently there are many test methods to detect microplastics. Few have been validated and many are subject to false positive results due to procedural sample contamination.

This project will use already developed and validated microplastics sampling and test methods to quantify plastics in wastewater effluents and the environment. Plastics will be deployed at treatment plants to evaluate degradation of plastics in the wastewater treatment process. These degraded plastics will be used to assist in the identification of plastic particles in effluents. This project will also provide an improved understanding of the background levels of microplastic particles in local Australian environments.

The project objectives are:

  • To understand background levels of microplastics
  • To understand the fate of microplastics within the wastewater treatment process
  • To understand quantity of microplastics in wastewater effluents (including temporal and seasonal variability)

WaterRA Contact

Arash Zamyadi | Research Manager 

Amount being sought

<$100k project

Due Date

26th Mar, 2021