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Side Event: Management of drinking water quality


An Aquavalens workshop on wider impact on water safety of improved techniques to detect waterborne pathogens, in large water supplies.

The provision of safe drinking water relies on knowledge of the risks posed by pathogens to enable implementation of effective control measures. Sufficient advancements have taken place in our understanding of the risks to enable the World Health Organization to develop the concept of health-based targets as a quantitative measure to define the microbiological safety of drinking water.

This approach requires the ability to improve the detection of pathogens in a range of water types and for suitable tools and techniques for on-going surveillance of the quality of water supplies.

The EU funded Aquavalens project, which comprises a consortium of 39 partners from across Europe, has been at the forefront of these developments. The project is due to finish shortly and the partners will present the results of this work at our side event during Amsterdam International Water Week.

New methods were developed for recovery of all types of pathogens from untreated and treated drinking water using commercially available filtration systems. At the same time, molecular techniques were developed and refined to enable better detection of various viral, bacterial and protozoan pathogens and produced in simple-to-use kits that would facilitate use by laboratories.

A number of on-line and automated detection systems were evaluated for their ability to provide surveillance of the quality of raw waters and to detect disturbances in the distribution system likely to adversely affect the microbiological safety of drinking water.

The performance of these techniques was evaluated at four demonstration sites across Europe that provided a range of water types, treatment systems and distribution systems that provide large supplies of drinking water. The results obtained by these methods were compared with those obtained by conventional monitoring.

Our event at 9am on Thursday 2nd November will inform on the outcome of these field trials and consider their wider relevance for improving the ability to manage the microbiological safety of drinking water supplies. The programme will include a series of presentations of the tools and techniques and explore their suitability for routine application in water industry laboratories. In particular, consideration will be given to the benefits that can be gained and we will examine the technical and regulatory barriers that might need to be overcome to enable them to gain wider acceptance.

See you at this Aquavalens side event!

Thursday 2 November | 09.00 – 12.00 | Room G105, Floor 1, Elicium Centre, Entrance D, Amsterdam RAI

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