Colloidal fractions of persistent organic pollutants in road runoff: sources, generation and innovative treatment techniques

One of the major sources of Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) in urban areas is traffic. Stormwater flushing over road surfaces gathers a variety of metals and organic pollutants. Some of these pollutants easily bind to nanoparticles, e.g. colloids, and consequently become persistent in environment and difficult to remove from the water phase. Techniques used to reduce the amount of pollutants from stormwater include for example stormwater ponds or disc- and sorption filters. Street sweeping and car washing may also be used to reduce the amounts of POPs reaching the environment. However, there is currently not much knowledge on how effective available methods are to remove the colloidal fractions of POPs. The main task of this project is to carry out research to determine, quantify and finally remove colloidal pollutants from road runoff, before they contaminate surface and ground waters. This includes an extensive study of sources, uses and emissions of POPs, generation of colloidal POPs in road environments as well as investigating the effectiveness of existing methods. The research is expected to provide information to propose the best solutions for reducing or removing POPs from traffic and road runoff.

Partner organizations

  • University of British Columbia (UBC) (Academic, Canada)
  • Technical University of Denmark (DTU) (Academic, Denmark)
Start date 01/01/2014
End date The project is closed: 31/12/2017

Published: Tue 06 May 2014. Modified: Thu 31 May 2018