Info from the Spanish case study
Objectives: of the study is to gain
- insights into current contamination patterns
- possible sources
- loads and fluxes of microplastics in a selected freshwater system.
The selected site is the Henares river basin, located in a Mediterranean continental semi-arid region in central Spain (see map).
- Three different river sites, for sampling water and sediment, characterized by:
(1) vegetated and forest areas,
(2) agricultural areas
- Five wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) with different characteristics (treatment steps, person equivalent, etc.) for sampling untreated and treated WW and sludge.
- Runoff water is collected in three experimental plots:
(1) recently treated with WWTP sludge
(2) historically treated with WWTP sludge
(3) never treated with WWTP sludge (control)
- Water samples (up to 10 m3 of river water, up to 200 L of waste water) are filtered through plankton nets of different mesh sizes (350, 200, 55, 20 mm) to collect even smaller microplastics, expected to not be retained during wastewater treatment.