Respective contributions of point and non point sources of E. coli and Enterococci in a large urbanised watershed (the Seine river, France)

Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2007
AuthorsT. Armisen, G, Servais, P
JournalJournal of Environmental Management
Start Page512
Date Published04/2007
Mots-clésescherichia coli, fecal contamination, intestinal enteroccoci, surface runoff and soil leaching, uv treatment, wastewaters
Because the large rivers of the Seine watershed have a low microbiological water quality, the main sources of fecal contamination were investigated in the present study. The inputs of the point (wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) effluents) and non-point sources (surface runoff and soil leaching) of fecal bacteria were quantified for Escherichia coli and intestinal enteroccoci used as bacterial indicators. In order to assess the contamination through non-point sources, fecal indicators abundance was estimated in samples collected in small streams located in rural areas upstream from all point sources; these small rivers were characterized by the land use of their watershed. Bacterial indicator numbers were also measured in effluents of WWTPs, some using classical treatment (settling followed by activated sludge process) and some using an additional disinfection stage (UV irradiation). These data were used to estimate the respective importance of each type of source at the scale of the whole Seine river watershed taking into account the land use and the population density. It shows the predominant importance of the point sources of fecal indicator bacteria at the scale of the whole watershed. In a scenario in which activated sludge treatment would be complemented with UV in all WWTPs located in this watershed, the non-point sources of fecal indicator bacteria would be dominant.