EBS continues driving innovation in wastewater treatment. In doing so, we have implemented new technology to identify sources of fecal bacteria in wastewater treatment systems. Many of our clients have permit limits for fecal indicator bacteria in their effluents. When concentrations are above these limits in systems that do not have domestic influences, the question becomes “where is it coming from?”
Our analysis replicates small sequences of DNA that are unique to a host organism, which allows us to quantifiably detect what species of bacteria are present in a sample. Based on the presence and absence of certain types of bacteria we can determine whether or not there is a fecal source from humans or wildlife, or if the bacteria may naturally exist in the environment and originate in plant material and soil. When the source of the bacteria has been identified, the plant environmental staff can use this information to target sources of contamination or assist state regulatory agencies in developing new limits and/or altering testing procedures.