Update of quality standards for the Water Protection Ordinance

Update of quality standards for the Water Protection Ordinance

In Swiss surface waters numerous micropollutants are regularly detected. To assess the water quality in Europe, most countries use effect-based values or quality standards, below which no adverse effects on aquatic organisms should occur. In Switzerland, these values are not legally binding yet. However, the Swiss Water Protection Ordinance was just revised.Es of now, effect-based quality criteria can be set for the main substances getting into the water. 

In recent years, the Ecotox Centre has already derived proposals for environmental quality standards for 83 micropollutants for the Federal Office of the Environment. All proposals are available on our website. The existing quality standards of 62 of these substances are now reviewed and updated if necessary. These proposals will then be legally binding under the new Water Protection Ordinance.


Dr. Marion Junghans
Dr. Marion Junghans Send mail Tel. +41 58 765 5401


23. April 2020

Effect-based limits come into force - milestone for a long-term project

With the amendment to the Water Protection Ordinance of 1 April 2020, an important goal was achieved: For 19 pesticides and three pharmaceuticals, the quality criteria developed by the Ecotox Centre now apply as limit values for surface waters.

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