Wastewater Forum Meeting Notes

Wastewater Innovation Forum

MINUTES of the 67th Forum meeting of 16th October 2019
Please note that for older reports some links will be to sites that are no longer active.

  1. Attendees
    Steve Bungay (SB) Helix ECL / FWR Wastewater Co-ordinator (Secretary)&
    Alice Horton (AH) National Oceanography Centre (NOC)
    Gordon Jones (GJ) FWR
    Stephen Palmer (SP) Stantec
    Peter Vale (PV) Severn Trent Water

    The meeting started with brief roundtable introductions as everybody knows each other. SB let the forum know that he would be standing down from the role of secretary. He is starting a part-time PhD at Cranfield University and is streamlining his time commitments.

    Although it couldn’t be announced at the meeting, it is now confirmed that Oliver Grievson will be taking over from SB as secretary.

  2. Matters arising and items not on the agenda

    2.1 Technical Presentations / Patent Applications

    SB informed the Forum that the FWR had been contacted by the Senior Patent Examiner at the UK IPO regarding a historical technical presentation. Pratik Desai had previously given a presentation on “Hot Microbubble Injection in Thin Liquid Layers for Ammonia - Water Separations”. Subsequent to this presentation, Pratik had made a Patent Application no.170614 regarding the technology. Unfortunately, because details of the technology were already in the public domain, his application was ineligible and turned down. Pratik had given a presentation at an Aqua Enviro conference before he presented it to the Forum. So, although, the Forum did not contribute to the ineligibility of the technology, it was a timely reminder that we may have to check with future presenters whether-or-not their presentation could impact on any future patent applications.

    2.2 ROCKs

    There have been two new ROCKs published:

    1. Freshwater Pollution: Ecological Impact Assessment and Remediation.
    2. Plastic Pollution in Rivers and Oceans.

    ROCKs under consideration

    Circular Economy
    SP has provided a proposal for a ROCK on the Circular Economy for Water.

    Subsequent to the meeting, this ROCK has been approved for publication.

    Andrew Singer, CEH had been identified as an alternative author, and he had agreed to write a lead article for the Newsletter.

    Anaerobic Wastewater Treatment
    Ana Soares to produce a proposal for a ROCK on Anaerobic Wastewater Treatment.

    Rocks for consideration

    1. Flow Measurement
    2. Digital Transformation

    We still need to give consideration to publicising the ROCKs – possible article in WWT?

    2.3 Newsletter

    The lead article in the February Newsletter was by Dr Louise Lavictoire, titled “Livers of our rivers – population recovery of the endangered freshwater”, and Wastewater Matters had an article on “Biodegradable Packaging – an environmental alternative to plastic?”, which highlighted the current confusion regarding biodegradable plastics, and in their current form biodegradable packaging is not a sustainable alternative to plastic.

    2.4 Website

    The presentations from Ben Hazard, Trant Engineering “C-ION Advanced Oxidation Process”, and Lewis O’Brien, and Ulrich Knoerle, Eliquo Hydrok and Eliquo Stultz “EloVac/EloPhos” have been uploaded onto the website.

    2.5 Social Media

    The forum twitter account @F4WaterResearch (Link top right of Wastewater Banner) is slowly getting more followers. From the previous meeting the number of followers has increased from 328 to 351 (361 at the time of writing) followers.

    Admin rights of the Twitter account have now been passed over to Oliver Grievson.

    A LinkedIn company page has been set up. Currently admin rights are shared between SB and Oliver Grievson.

    2.6 Wikipedia GJ has now successfully set up a Wikipedia page (Link top right of Wastewater Banner)which has been operational for approximately two months: The page gives a history of the FWR. There is a link to the FWR’s main website.
  3. Areas of Research
    The areas of focus remain:

    1. Microplastics
    2. Anti Microbial Resistance
    3. Chemical Investigations Programme
    4. Unflushables
    5. Drainage Wastewater Management Plans
    6. Anaerobic Wastewater Treatment
  4. Roundtable

    The roundtable discussions centred mainly around microplastics, the work being undertaken at Severn Trent’s Innovation Hub at Spernal STW, and the development of the FWR’s Wikipedia page.

    UKWIR report “Sink to River – River to Tap: A Review of Potential Risk from Nanoparticles and Microplastics” has been completed and is available to buy (44) or view free-of-charge on-line: The work was undertaken by CEH on behalf of UKWIR covering microplastics in wastewater, potable water, and sludge. The report is a very detailed report, and details that both potable and wastewater treatment plants remove 99.99% of microplastics. In removing these microplastics from the waterline, they are transferred to the sludgeline. UKWIR are scoping CIP3 to investigate the complexity of emerging issues such as microplastics.

    Microplastics Network
    This network was funded by NERC, and the funding is coming to an end. The network will be merging with the UK Circular Plastics Network.

    Spernal STW Test Bed
    Severn Trent are currently in the process of completing a new multi-million pound demonstration test-bed at Spernal STW.

    The test-bed will include the largest demonstration scale AnMBR system in Europe capable of treating up to 500 m3/d. Members of the Forum working on this project include PV, SB, and Ana Soares.

  5. Any other business

    Possible site visit to Severn Trent’s new innovation test centre at Spernal STW once the site is operational.

  6. Future Technical Presentations

    Possible speakers and presentations

    Spring Professor Sonia Heaven – University of Southampton (confirmed)
    Professor Sir Brian Hoskins – Imperial College (invited)
    Ana Soares Cranfield University – Anaerobic Wastewater Treatment, Nutrient Recovery
    Possible speaker from Arcadia concerning emerging contaminants ~ Jonathan Miles, Ian Ross, Jake Hurst

    Other suggestions are always welcome.

  7. Conferences and Key Dates
    23rd January Utility Week Water Customer Conference
    24th January Managing Plastic Waste Forum (Westminster Insight)
    28th January WWT Wastewater Conference & Exhibition 2020
    29th January Instrumentation & Process Control in the Water Industry (SWIG)
    4th March Successfully using Instrumentation in Challenging Wastewater Environments (SWIG)
    11th March WWT Smart Water 2020 Conference
    14th July The Future if Sewer Network Management (Aqua Enviro)
    14th – 15th July European Wastewater Management Conference (Aqua Enviro)

  8. Forum Membership
    The total membership is currently thirty-four. Of this, there are ten active members, ten occasional attendees, and fourteen corresponding members. Of the active members, one water company, two universities, three consultancies, two regulators, two industrial organisations, and three independent consultants, are represented.

    Attendance to the meetings has a minimum attendance of six, an average attendance of eight, with a maximum attendance of twenty-four, including CIWEM.

  9. On-going Actions
    1. ALL Suggestions for presentations
             Suggestions for new members

  10. Technical Presentations There were 14 attendees for the technical presentations (including speakers and CIWEM Wastewater and Biosolids Panel):

    Steve Bungay, Alice Horton, Gordon Jones, Dr Stephen Palmer, and Pete Vale.

    Steve Bungay, Heather Gardner, Alice Horton, Rick Lancaster, Dr Stephen Palmer, Pete Pearce, Dr Stephen Smith, Tom Taylor, Pete Vale, Peter Winter. Remotely: Darragh Hobbs and Edoardo Piano.

    Pete Vale, Technical Lead Innovation – Severn Trent Water
    SMART Plant: Developing low carbon technologies to recover resources from wastewater.

    Viktoryia Nestserava – The Anaerobic Digestion and Bioresources Association (ADBA)
    Anaerobic Digestion Certification Scheme.

  11. Date of next meeting
    Wednesday 18th March 2020