Water Quality Testing

Water quality testing

Municipalities need to monitor water quality of beaches in real-time to protect public health.

As our weather conditions become more extreme, numerous cities are sourcing for more resilient infrastructure and associated technology to ensure safety for their residents. With dangerous pollutants such as faecal bacteria significantly increasing health risks for swimmers, municipalities are experiencing an increased need for real-time monitoring of water quality to protect public health.

Why is water quality testing such as Coliplage required?

A standard laboratory test can determine if the water is contaminated, and most of beaches are regularly monitored to ensure that residents can safely enjoy refreshing swims in summer. This standard test is, however, limited by a long response time: results come within 24 to 48 hours after water sampling. Because of this delay, local authorities often struggle to decide on whether or not they should close their beaches after heavy rain.

What is Veolia’s water quality testing technique, Coliplage?

Veolia developed a unique technique, Coliplage, which allows the detection of faecal contamination in only one hour after water sampling. Local authorities can, therefore, make informed decisions to ensure their beaches are safe to enjoy almost immediately after heavy rain.

Coliplage works by following the steps below:
  1. Water is first sampled in the water body that needs to be tested. Sampling water at two depths (0.3m and 1m below the water surface) is recommended for higher accuracy. Water samples are then transported to the lab
  2. A known volume of the sample is then filtered to concentrate all bacteria in the sample
  3. The filter (containing the bacteria) is then placed into an e-flask containing the chemical compound “MuGlu” that can be degraded by E. coli
  4. The e-flask containing the filter and the MuGlu compound is then incubated in a water batch at warm temperature for 20 min. The enzymes naturally produced by E. coli degrade the MuGlu compound, which results in the production of a fluorescent compound. The solution is sampled every five minutes
  5. The fluorescence of each sample is then measured with a spectrofluorometer
  6. The level of fluorescence is then plotted over time, and the increase rate of fluorescence is then calculated by linear regression
  7. The E. coli concentration is then determined by using an existing correlation between the rate of fluorescence increase vs. E. coli concentration

Where has Veolia previously implemented its water quality testing technique, Coliplage?

Our Coliplage technique has been used in 181 beaches for almost 15 years in France and significantly eased the job of French authorities.

Want to learn more about Veolia’s water quality testing technique, Coliplage?

In Australia
Please submit an online enquiry to our customer service team or call us at 02 8571 0000.

In New Zealand
Please submit an online enquiry to our customer service team or call us at 0800 325 542.