From waste to resource: Training young researchers on developing innovative, circular solutions for wastewater treatment sludge - INCLUE

WP3: Eco-Impact Assessment

WP3 is dedicated to modelling and predicting the impact of the tested sludge pre-treatment and bioconversion processes on their environmental friendliness. This will enable to go far beyond the state-of-the-art and provide a complete, effective assessment of the value chain. This is obviously of paramount importance for the integration of the (combined) technologies on an industrial scale and when using the sludge, digestate and/or char-like streams as fertilising agents in agriculture. 

Therefore, DC8 will focus on the socio-economic and regulatory impact of the technology implementation. DC9 will investigate the agronomic value of the treated sludges, char-based materials and digestates by characterising the efficiencies and innocuousness of these streams and characterise the organic pollutants’ accessibility and soil dynamics and their possible phytotoxic effects. 

Besides toxicity screening in an industrialised context (i.e., during or after sludge treatment), it is very important to investigate the potential embryotoxicological effects when releasing the sludge into the environment. This will be assessed by DC10, by using whole vertebrate organism assays. Lastly, DC11 (associated DC candidate) will focus on the development of novel biosensors for rapid assessment of residual pollutant bacterial toxicity in treated sludge streams.