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No. When investigated in large-scale trials and elsewhere, it was shown that nitrification is unnecessary. The necessary abatement performance regarding micropollutants can be achieved without any problems also without nitrification or denitrification. However, nitrification/denitrification facilitate the abatement of micropollutants, on the one hand through a tendency towards higher degradation in the biological stage, and on the other hand through better influent quality to processes installed after the secondary clarifier (e.g. ozonation, activated carbon). This reduces the operating costs of micropollutant abatement by 5 to 10%.

In any case, nitrification/denitrification are beneficial for WWTPs and water bodies: the abatement performance for various parameters (ammonium, nitrite, organic carbon) is improved and the operation is generally more stable. Therefore, nitrification – directly or indirectly – is stipulated as a standard by various cantons.

It is recommended to contact the “Process Engineering Micropollutants” platform.

So far, no special training is planned for the respective procedures. An introduction is provided by the equipment supplier. In addition, safety fact sheets are available for handling ozone, oxygen and PAC (in German, French and Italian). A module on micropollutants has been developed by the VSA for training sewage treatment plant attendants (training level A7).

Various projects on this topic are currently underway to examine possible measures at the source, develop analytics and strengthen the understanding of its environmental relevance.

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