Polluted water by Chinese corona approach
Wastewater treatment plants only partially succeed in removing coronaviruses from sewage water. This is probably not very problematic. The chance of transmitting Covid-19 via the water is small. But in China they prefer to play it safe, knows Jan Peter van der Hoek (Civil Engineering and Geosciences). He was asked by colleagues at the Shanghai Institute of Pollution Control and Ecological Security, among others, to participate in a study of the consequences of China's wastewater treatment approach.
"China's strategy is to disinfect wastewater with chlorine and thereby kill the virus," the professor of sanitary engineering explains. "As a result, many unwanted disinfection byproducts are created." Van der Hoek is particularly concerned about the so-called brominated compounds (substances with the bromine atom) that can be harmful to the environment. It is mainly these substances that are formed, according to the study published last month in the journal Science of The Total Envrionment. "The concentrations of brominated compounds that end up in surface water are really very high. That has never been measured before." (TvD)