A Nuredrain 2.0 project?

07 May 2021 - Published by Charlotte Boeckaert
The Interreg North Sea Region secretariat has launched call 12 in January 2021. This call is intended for ongoing projects to request budget for extra activities. The Nuredrain consortium has grabbed this opportunity with both hands to test filter material regeneration on the one hand and to further demonstrate and disseminate our innovative solutions to authorities and the farming community on the other hand.

Different filter systems have been developed and tested in the field in Belgium, Denmark and Germany. With success, both nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) can be removed from drainage water and greenhouse effluent. N and P-removal efficiencies vary between 60 and 95% depending on the flow and nutrient concentration of the water. Taking into account the capital and operating costs of these filter systems, the filters have shown to be cost-effective and competitive with current mitigation measures.

Regeneration of filter material
As a next step to further improve the filters, we aim to enable the regeneration of filter material. Nutrient removal will be as such even more sustainable and will contribute to the circular economy.

In addition, the Nuredrain consortium wants to capitalize its results and build further on the expertise gained. This was also the request from the authorities we consulted. E.g. the Flanders Environment Agency (VMM, BE) requested to test more filters in the field and to demonstrate its long term performance and their effect on a whole catchment area.

Therefore, in the requested extension period of Nuredrain, while mature filter systems will be installed at new locations to favor the uptake of new technology, immature filter systems will be further improved to guarantee optimal effectiveness.

Fingers crossed
Evaluation of the extension request is to be expected by June 15th. We keep our fingers crossed for a positive outcome. As nutrient excesses in surface water remain a challenge for nearly all EU member states, the Nuredrain project might bring tangible solutions creating an EU wide impact.