Tracking down the source of pollution at ET

The latest innovations in identifying what's living in a watercourse and finding sources of pollution was a highlight of ET at Sustainabilitylive!

Dr Haydn Gregg Williams, business development manager with EnviroGene, explained how the molecular tools can be used to work out how effective natural bacteria are at breaking down pollution.

Using case studies Dr Williams explained how his company’s BioTraps have monitored the reductive dechlorinators in situ samplers.

The BioTraps are passive sampling devices that can be lowered into a groundwater monitoring well to collect indigenous microorganisms.

They are typically left in place for 30 days and so collect an integrative sample, rather than the single ‘snap-shot’ provided by traditional water samples.

It’s initially sterile but on deployment rapidly becomes colonised by indigenous bacteria, giving an exact example of life in the watercourse.

Dr Williams also explained how his firm has been working on tracing technology capable of tracking the source of pollution to a single point.

Or assessing what proportion of waste comes from multiple geographic sources, resolving pollution problems.

  • Dr Williams spoke at ET, part of Sustainabilitylive! on Tuesday, May 19
  • Luke Walsh

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