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The conference Ninth International Water Association Symposium, which started yesterday (14 August) and ends on Thursday (18 August), brings together more than 80 environmental scientists from across the UK, Europe, China, Taiwan and the US to discuss off-flavours in the aquatic environment.

Held at Robert Gordon University’s Institute for Innovation, Design & Sustainability Research (IDEAS) in Aberdeen, the Symposium aims to provide a forum for specialists and those interested in finding out the causes, origins and management of off-flavours in drinking water, wastewater, and aquatic environments such as lakes, rivers and estuaries.

Environmental Microbiology at the Institute, professor Linda Lawton, said despite in-depth research into off-flavours many issues remain unresolved.

She said: “Off-flavours, including unusual odours, are recognised by the water community worldwide to be a major cause of consumer complaints and a loss in confidence of drinking water safety by the general public.

“These problems can arise from natural or industry sources including spillages of toxic substances, and are also seen in fish tainting and bottled water.”

As part of the event, delegates will take part in interactive session and workshops, featuring international speakers and presentations, and will explore a number of themes including off-flavours in source water, analytical methods, odours in fish and aquaculture, and sulfur-related odours in water and air.

For more information on the conference visit: http://www.rgu.ac.uk

Carys Matthews

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