Methods to Protect Beneficial Bacteria from Contaminants to Preserve Water Quality

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2015 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$279,000
Fund Source
Environment & Natural Resources Trust Fund
Recipient
U of MN
Recipient Type
Public College/University
Status
Completed
Start Date
July 2014
End Date
June 2017
Counties Affected
Statewide
Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2014, Chp. 226, Sec. 2, Subd. 03b
Appropriation Language

$279,000 the second year is from the trust fund to the Board of Regents of the University of Minnesota to research how and why bacteria that provide ecological functions humans depend on for water quality are affected by exposure to certain man-made perfluorinated chemicals entering the wastewater treatment system in order to identify methods that can be implemented to protect those bacterial functions from being degraded. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2017, by which time the project must be completed and final products delivered.

2015 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$279,000
Other Funds Leveraged
$0
Direct expenses
$279,000
Number of full time equivalents funded
3.22
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on Work Plan under Project Details.

Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on Work Plan under Project Details.

Project Overview

Many types of bacteria perform critical ecological functions, such as cycling carbon and other nutrients, which enable life to exist. In fact, humans harness these types of bacteria in certain engineered systems, such as wastewater treatment plants and landfills, to provide various benefits such as protecting surface waters from excess nitrogen, decomposing solid waste, and treating wastewater. Unfortunately, the environments within these systems where the beneficial bacteria live are also environments that receive a complex array of synthetic chemicals that can negatively affect bacterial function, particularly when present in mixtures. One such class of chemicals that find their way into these systems is perfluorinated chemicals, which research has suggested can cause other co-contaminants to be more toxic to bacteria. Researchers at the University of Minnesota are using this appropriation to research how and why these beneficial bacteria are affected by exposure to perfluorinated chemicals entering the wastewater treatment system in order to help develop and engineer methods to better protect and enhance the important ecological functions these bacteria provide.

Project Manager
First Name
Paige
Last Name
Novak
Organization Name
U of MN
Street Address
500 Pillsbury Dr SE, 122 Civil Engineering Bldg
City
Minneapolis
State
MN
Zip Code
55455
Phone
(612) 626-9846
Email
novak010@umn.edu