Scientists from the University of Brighton's Aquatic Research Centre (ARC) are working with Thames Water to help manage potential health risks associated with recycled wastewater at the UK's largest community wastewater recycling scheme at London's Olympic Park.
The Old Ford Water Recycling Plant (WRP), located next to the main site of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, treats 600,000 litres of wastewater every day, which is then used to flush toilets and irrigate parkland at the Olympic site. The project, led by Professor Huw Taylor and Dr James Ebdon from the School of Environment and Technology, will explore the ability of the plant to remove groups of viruses known as bacteriophages, with support from researchers Dr Sarah Purnell and Austen Buck.
Jointly funded by the Olympic Delivery Authority and Thames Water at a cost of £7million, the Old Ford Water Recycling Plant was not only part of a sustainable water strategy for the Olympic Games (reducing potable water use by 58%), but is regarded as a platform on which detailed research into this increasingly important field can be conducted. The findings of the research are likely to be of international interest and will contribute to a growing body of knowledge that will help to reduce our over-reliance on potable water sources.