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MILJØFORSK-Miljøforskning for en grønn samfunnsomstilling

Biodiversity restoration and conservation of inland water ecosystems for environmental and human well-being

Alternative title: Restaurering av biologisk mangfold og bevaring av innlandsvannøkosystemer for miljø og menneskelig velvære

Awarded: NOK 3.0 mill.

Pollution from wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) is threatening the biodiversity of inland waters that are vital to society and environment. Treatments used in WWTPs do not efficiently remove emerging contaminants (i.e. pharmaceuticals and microplastics) which lead to health hazards to non-target species, including humans and threat conservation and restoration of freshwater systems. Also, it is needed strategies for up-scaling restoration solutions and for assessing conservation and restoration progress quickly. Bioreset proposes to advanced treatment processes to promote ecosystem recovery and conservation and to develop new assessment strategies based on diatoms status. Environmental, economic, and social viability of innovative technologies will be assessed. Scale-up studies in geographically different sites to ascertain the technical and economic feasibility at a larger scale will be performed and recommended action guidelines will be issued. BioReset also envisages the creation of a representative space-time picture of the presence of emerging contaminants in inland waters and its correlation to effects on diatom communities as bioindicators of ecosystems. So far 67 diatom species were found in the characterization of diatom diversity and abundance in a Portuguese river at four sampling points. The data of these species were used to evaluate the ecological status of the sampling site: two were classified as moderate and the other two as good. In order to improve the efficiency and scale-up of wastewater treatments, the valuation of agro-industrial waste in the form of biochar and hydrochar was tested. Through the adaptation of engineering techniques and the optimization of production conditions, these materials acquired remarkable properties that enable a more efficient solution for wastewater treatment. In another approach, fungi were successfully used for drug removal, providing an environmental solution for wastewater treatment. Several low-cost sensors were developed for the analysis of pharmaceuticals. These sensors are easy to use and provide a quick way to check the presence of certain drugs in the environment. These achievements contribute to reducing threats to biodiversity (reducing chemical and plastic loads on the environment), improving knowledge on the conservation and recovery of aquatic ecosystems and their monitoring, creating multi-stakeholder partnerships to generate solutions at local, national, regional and global level.

Pollution from wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) is threatening the biodiversity of inland waters that are vital to society and environment. Treatments used in WWTPs do not efficiently remove emerging contaminants (i.e. pharmaceuticals and microplastics) which lead to health hazards to non-target species, including humans and threat conservation and restoration of freshwater systems. Also, it is needed strategies for up-scaling restoration solutions and for assessing conservation and restoration progress quickly. Bioreset proposes to advanced treatment processes to promote ecosystem recovery and conservation and to develop assessment strategies. Diatoms will be used to model ecosystem conservation and restoration since their communities show high levels of biodiversity. The diatoms will provide an expeditious method to compare different recovery strategies and water treatment processes, allowing to address timescale and key conservation/restoration questions. The full environmental, economic, and social viability of the upgraded and innovative treatment technologies will be assessed using LCA and SWOT assessments. Scale-up studies in geographically different sites to ascertain the technical and economic feasibility at a larger scale will be performed and recommended action guidelines will be issued. BioReset also envisages the creation of a representative space-time picture of the presence of emerging contaminants in inland waters and its correlation to effects on diatom communities as bioindicators of ecosystems. Besides these methods, miniaturized analytical platforms that can perform fast and on-site monitoring will also be employed. BioReset will produce data, methodologies and information for policy makers, authorities, stakeholders and environmental managers who design approaches and interventions to achieve and maintain biodiversity and a good ecological state of freshwater ecosystems, outreaching actions that address society awareness and best practices.

Funding scheme:

MILJØFORSK-Miljøforskning for en grønn samfunnsomstilling

Thematic Areas and Topics

LTP3 Bioøkonomi og forvaltningLTP3 HelseBioøkonomiBioøkonomiSektorovergripende bioøkonomiPortefølje Mat og bioressurserLTP3 Nano-, bioteknologi og teknologikonvergensBioteknologiHelseSirkulær økonomiBransjer og næringerBioteknologiIndustriell bioteknologiPortefølje HelseVerifisering, pilotering, demonstrasjon (ny fra 2014)Naturmangfold og miljøTerrestrisk forurensning inkl. miljøgifterAnvendt forskningGrunnforskningBransjer og næringerMiljø - NæringsområdeLTP3 Styrket konkurransekraft og innovasjonsevneCo-Funded/ERA-NETERA-NET Cofund H2020LTP3 Muliggjørende og industrielle teknologierNaturmangfold og miljøTerrestrisk naturmangfold, økosystemer og økosystemtjenesterFNs BærekraftsmålMål 6 Rent vann og gode sanitærforholdFNs BærekraftsmålPortefølje Banebrytende forskningPolitikk- og forvaltningsområderMiljø, klima og naturforvaltningInternasjonaliseringInternasjonalt prosjektsamarbeidInternasjonaliseringInternasjonalt samarbeid om utlysningPortefølje Muliggjørende teknologierPortefølje ForskningssystemetJoint Programming Initiative (JPI) (ny fra 2014)LTP3 Høy kvalitet og tilgjengelighetLTP3 Uttesting og kommersialisering av FoUPortefølje Klima og miljøJoint Programming Initiative (JPI) (ny fra 2014)JPI Water ChallengesLTP3 Klima, miljø og energiLTP3 Et kunnskapsintensivt næringsliv i hele landetLTP3 Klima, polar og miljøLTP3 Rettede internasjonaliseringstiltakPortefølje InnovasjonNaturmangfold og miljøCo-Funded/ERA-NETPolitikk- og forvaltningsområderInternasjonalisering