Monitoring and modelling emerging contaminants in freshwater

Understanding the risk from chemicals is crucial to ensure their sustainable use while protecting people and the environment. Our research assists the identification of chemical hazards and develops risk assessments, to identify effective mitigation and restoration strategies. 

We have pioneered research into a wide range of chemicals and substances discharged in wastewater, including engineered nanoparticles, metals, persistent organic pollutants, pharmaceuticals, personal care products and antimicrobials.

Case study: Modelling nanomaterials in Europe

Our scientists developed the Global Water Availability Assessment (GWAVA) model to provide an integrated assessment of water sources and demands at national to continental scales. It is used to assess water quality and was recently used to predict nano-silver and nano-zinc oxide concentrations in surface waters across Europe, offering an insight into their likely spatial distributions and temporal dynamics. 

Tool: LF2000-WQX

LowFlows2000 Water Quality eXtension (LF2000-WQX) is a GIS–based water quality model we developed that has been used extensively within the UK to predict concentration distributions in surface waters of several widely used down-the-drain chemicals. The model can readily be applied to the English and Welsh river network, with extension to other regions possible.