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Suez launches solution to monitor SARS-CoV-2 virus in wastewater networks

  • Suez launches solution to monitor SARS-CoV-2 virus in wastewater networks
    Image: SUEZ

About the entity

As an expert in water and waste for 150 years that is present on the 5 continents, SUEZ harnesses all its capacity for innovation to work for the efficient and sustainable management of resources.

In the context of a resurgence of the Covid-19 epidemic, SUEZ is deploying an offer to monitor the presence of SARS-CoV-2 in wastewater networks. Developed by the Group's scientific and technical research teams, this innovative system enables local authorities to better assess the circulation of the virus on their territories and to better anticipate the health measures to implement at the neighborhood level.

Named "City Sentinel Covid-19", this new offer has been commercialized since the beginning of June in Spain to 15 local authorities. It has proved its efficiency by monitoring the quantity of virus present in wastewater at several points in the sewerage networks, particularly downstream of sensitive areas, high-risk or critical facilities (nursing homes, schools, etc.) and buildings with a high occupancy rate.

This new offer relies on scientific research which has established that the viral load present in wastewater is a relevant and early marker (2 to 3 days) of its circulation in populations. The system warns on the emergence of new outbreaks of contaminations as soon as the contamination phase begins, regardless of the proportion of asymptomatic people, and makes it possible to manage the implementation of reinforced protection measures (screening tests, campaigns for barrier measures including the wearing of masks, etc.), or to limit access to certain sensitive establishments.

Already operational in 15 municipalities in Spain, Covid-19 City Sentinel is currently deployed in France, the United States, India and Chile. This approach complements the national surveillance networks currently being developed, particularly in France with the OBEPINE network in which SUEZ is proud to participate.

The launch of SUEZ’s first offer, particularly in Spain and internationally, demonstrates the commitment of the Group and of its partners in the fight against the spread of the coronavirus. The teams are also working on identifying markers of the presence of the virus, which are simpler and easier to measure than SARS-CoV-2. This system will enable sanitation services that do not have advanced analytical capabilities to monitor the presence and the activity of the virus in their sanitation systems. The SUEZ Group has 29,000 employees in France, supported by a talent pool of nearly 650 researchers and 1,400 experts in Research & Innovation. France is a land of innovation for our Group: we have our global R&D center there.

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