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14-Jun-2018 11:21:24

The Hidden Cost of Tourism on Your Local Infrastructure

How Spikes in Tourism Impact Utilities Like WasteWater Managment

In recent years there has been a significant increase in protests against tourists in Europe.

A wave of angry anti-British tourist sentiment has peaked across Europe with Spaniards taking to the streets in violent protests as many resorted to anti-tourism slogans and graffiti throughout its tourist hubs. Daily Express, June 5th, 2018

The reasons are numerous ranging from bad behavior to increased costs to the impact on locals as a result of the numbers. Tourist numbers in Europe look set to continue to rise as a result of the growing number of resorts served by low-cost airlines, an increase in long-haul flights from Asia direct to Europe, through to those seeking to ‘get some summer sun’ after a particularly poor winter in many northern European countries.

01-May-2018 11:14:41

How Better Waste Water Management Can Help Cities Like Cape Town

Innovations in WasteWater Technology Like MABR Can Help Transform Cities With Water Shortages

Cape Town is set in an amazing location nestled on the coast sitting under Table Mountain. With a population of 4 million, it is a popular tourist destination for those setting off up the Garden Route or looking for a city base before heading off to more rural areas. However, in recent years it is in the news as a result of the water shortages that have hit it. Cape Town has experienced a drought for the past 4 years and the situation is at crisis point. While Day Zero (the point at which the city administration turns off the taps) has been postponed until 2019, the prospects are still bleak with dams at 22% capacity, of which an estimated 10% is not fit for human consumption (the zero-day level is 13.5%).

09-Mar-2018 15:32:00

Why is Aeration Important for Wastewater Treatment?

Aeration and bubbles in Wastewater Treatment

Wastewater aeration is the process of adding air into wastewater to allow aerobic bio-degradation of the pollutant components. It is an integral part of most biological wastewater treatment systems. Unlike chemical treatment which uses chemicals to react and stabilize contaminants in the wastewater stream, biological treatment uses microorganisms that occur naturally in wastewater to degrade wastewater contaminants.

05-Mar-2018 16:26:44

Water shortages caused by climate changes create additional need for better WWT

The world needs better wastewater treatment facilities 

The world needs better wastewater treatment facilities to cope with water shortages caused by climate change and the ongoing population explosion.

13-Feb-2018 13:09:34

Energy-saving UCD technology breathes life into wastewater treatment

Chemical engineers at University College Dublin (UCD) have developed new technology to save energy in wastewater treatment.

Our approach targets a particularly wasteful step in wastewater treatment. Conventionally, this step involves forcing oxygen bubbles through the wastewater ‘sludge’ in order to support bacterial growth. The bacteria then absorb contaminants and nutrients from the water, thereby helping to clean it so it can be released back into the environment or recycled for human use. 

My research group at UCD’s School of Chemical and Bioprocess Engineering has developed an alternative technology: membranes that diffuse or ‘breathe’ oxygen and thereby directly support biofilms of bacteria. Our studies show that this membrane-aerated biofilm reactor (MABR) technology can save up to 75 per cent of the energy conventionally needed to support bacteria in their wastewater treatment role.

In 2014, OxyMem (the UCD spin-out company) delivered the first commercial MABR technology to the market, and it is now reducing energy use for wastewater treatment in numerous countries.

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