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The electrogenic wetland, presented at the IWA 2017 conference in Buenos Aires

The innovation of the METland concept, the electrogenic wetland, was presented this week at the Water and Development Congress and Exhibition organized by the International Water Association (IWA), held in Buenos Aires.

During the session devoted to rural and offgrid solutions, IMDEA Water researcher Belén Barroeta explained the basic aspects of this solution for wastewater treatment in small populations and its innovative nature with respect to constructed wetlands. The device allows the treatment of urban wastewater in small communities with a zero cost in energy, and pathogen-free water suitable for irrigation is obtained. In addition, the combination of electroactive bacteria with an innovative electroconductive material represents an improvement in the performance of classic biofilters, with a purification rate 10 times higher than that obtained with the usual techniques.

The concept has already been validated on a real scale, and is part of the H2020 iMETland project. The novelty of the proposal is to connect resources such as water, energy and ICT, protecting the environment.

The congress of the IWA has gathered more than 2,000 participants from 80 countries in the Argentine capital with the aim of finding solutions to the growing water challenges in the world, some of the most critical problems facing the planet today. The conference is a meeting point for water science and research with the public and private sectors, financial institutions and legislators, to promote cooperation on water and water solutions that can be applied worldwide.