The use of tertiary treated wastewater for aquaculture and for artificial recreational lakes
French Associates Institute for Agriculture and Biotechnology of Drylands and Zuckerberg Institute for Water Research, The Jacob Blaustein Institutes for Desert Research, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
Israel suffers from a chronic water shortage that led to enhanced utilization of treated wastewater (TWW) for variety of uses such as irrigation of agricultural crops and public gardens as well as feeding artificial lakes. In addition, TWW has been used for fish culture in some countries around the world, but not in Israel. During the past few decades there is recognition that TWW contains low concentrations of various organic micropollutants (OMPs), which are continuously introduced to the environment through different routes including TWW. While exposure of fish to OMPs in natural systems has led to adverse effects from an ecological point of view, the effects of TWW and associated OMPs on fish growth, health, immune function and bioaccumulation have rarely been studied in the context of fish production in aquaculture. The objectives of this research were to evaluate the effects of TWW reuse in Lake Yeruham on water quality and fish health, and to examine the feasibility of fish culture in tertiary TWW (TTWW). In this presentation the potential of TTWW reuse for these two aforementioned applications will be examined, with emphasis on the occurrence of OMPs in TWW and fish tissues. Results from Lake Yeruham will be presented as a case study for an artificial lake that receives TTWW daily and floods during the winter. Fish health and OMPs in water and fish tissues will be described and environmental implication will be discussed. This talk will also include a comprehensive analysis on whether TTWW can be used as a water source for fish culture in which fish are exposed to the TTWW for a prolonged time period. This will be done by evaluating the fish growth and health, as well as compliance with the international standards for safe consumption by measuring bioaccumulation of OMPs in fish tissues and water.