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StormTre

Rethink, reduce, reuse urban stormwater: removal of trace organic contaminants before groundwater recharge
Funder: European CommissionProject code: 886525 Call for proposal: H2020-MSCA-IF-2019
Funded under: H2020 | MSCA-IF-GF Overall Budget: 252,802 EURFunder Contribution: 252,802 EUR

StormTre

Description

The development of water-smart cities is one of the societal challenges of the EU. Urban water management is facing many challenges: urbanization, climate variability and water stress. Innovative solutions are required, such as urban stormwater reuse to enhance groundwater supplies. Stormwater contaminated with various substances could threaten valuable groundwater resources. Polar trace organic chemicals (TOrC) are of emerging concern as they are highly mobile in soil and data on the contamination risks are still scarce. Thus, a precautionary treatment is essential to improve stormwater quality prior to groundwater recharge. The StormTre project assesses the risks associated with TOrC in stormwater and their control with emerging, low-cost biochar systems. The project will be achieved through three tasks: i) field monitoring and risk assessment of TOrCs, ii) laboratory based treatment tests for challenging conditions, and iii) development of a forecasting model. The results will quantify the unknown risk associated with TOrC in stormwater – an important knowledge gap for stormwater reuse. The project will lead to design and operation recommendations for safe groundwater recharge. Hosted at Stanford University in the outgoing phase, Dr. Lena Mutzner (LM) will study water reuse systems in a stimulating environment, where water scarcity drives innovation towards water-smart cities. LM will enhance her skills in chemical analysis and deepen her knowledge in contaminant occurrence and treatment. In the return phase at Newcastle University, LM will be integrated in UK’s outdoor National Green Infrastructure Laboratory team, where she will be trained in microbial analysis and complement her scientific profile with biological process modelling knowledge. The unique combination of multi-disciplinary expertise gained will significantly enhance her career prospective towards building her own research group in the field of water quality and water reuse.

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