Modular Stepwise Procedure
The "Modular Stepwise Procedure" deals with the analysis and assessment of the condition of rivers in Switzerland. Tools are required to analyse and assess the water condition at various levels, from the water chemistry to the structure of plant and animal communities. However, no standardised ecotoxicological methods allowing the Cantonal bodies to assess the condition of their rivers have been available to date. The Ecotox Centre is working on the testing, further development and standardisation of such ecotoxicological methods.
Hormonally active substances and other trace substances enter our rivers and lakes via wastewater treatment plants and diffuse sources. The project evaluates which of the bioassays detecting estrogenic effects are suitable for the application by enforcement authorities or private laboratories. The objective is to find a sensitive, effect-based, simple, cost-effective and easily interpretable method that enables the detection of substances at especially sensitive locations and allows actions to reduce such substances, if necessary. Samples from twelve to fourteen rivers and water bodies in Switzerland with various wastewater concentrations are chemically analysed and screened for their ecotoxicological effect in various in-vitro bioassays.