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Urban Wastewater Reuse: Water Treatment And Effectiveness On Antibiotic-resistant Bacteria Abatement


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G. Del Re, A. Di Donato, R. Volpe & M. G. Perilli


In Abruzzo Region (Italy) the implementation of European Community and National regulations for urban wastewater reuse has been carried out since 2003, when the Environmental National Authority issued the D.M. 185 giving technical rules and water quality standards for three types of reuse: irrigation, civil aims and industry. Pilot plant experiences of tertiary treatments added to conventional urban wastewater treatment plants (UWWTPs) have been carried out, in order to test the suitability of different disinfection technologies to reach the standards required for an effluent to be reused. In addition other parameters affecting the quality of reclaimed water, and for which there is currently no regulation or control, have been investigated; among them, antibiotic resistant bacteria concentration. To evaluate the extent of problems related to antibiotic resistant bacteria and the effectiveness of tertiary treatment on their abatement level, a significant portion of the wastewater network of the city of L’Aquila (Italy) and the related wastewater treatment plant were monitored. Antibiotic resistant bacteria content in non-treated sewage from municipal hospital and residential areas was evaluated. The UWWTP treating this sewage is of activated sludge type and is located near the Aterno River. The wastewater coming from the secondary treatment and from the tertiary treatments was analysed in order to investigate the influence on the antibiotic-resistant bacteria content. An analogous investigation was carried out in the river upstream and downstream the point of discharge of the UWWTP. Keywords: wastewater treatment, water reuse, antibiotic-resistant bacteria.


wastewater treatment, water reuse, antibiotic-resistant bacteria.