Evaluation of microbial and chemical contaminant removals in different stormwater reuse systems

Ongoing and expected water scarcity necessitates improved collective use of water resources. Stormwater is considered an alternative water source for both potable and non-potable uses but has not been widely used as an alternative water source, most likely due to unclear benefits and cost of stormwater reuse as well as the concern about the presence of microbial and chemical contaminants in raw and treated stormwater. The proposed study will analyze the occurrences of various pathogens, antibiotic resistance genes, and chemical contaminants in raw and treated stormwater samples from several reuse facilities in the Twin Cities area. 

Removal efficiencies of microbial and chemical contaminants will be evaluated. Growth and survival of pathogens will be also evaluated by collecting and analyzing samples multiple times a day, including both when water is flowing and stagnant. In addition, cost for water reuse and contaminant removals will be calculated. This study will help stormwater practitioners and managers better manage their stormwater reuse systems, and will contribute to the establishment of safe and efficient reuse of Minnesota’s stormwater.

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