US EPA Coliphage Criteria: Key Knowledge Gaps and Coliphage Fate in Conventional and Advanced WRRFs


  • Thomas O. Worley-Morse PhD, Melanie A. Mann PE - Hazen and Sawyer
  • Raul Gonzalez PhD - Hampton Roads Sanitation District

The US EPA plans to introduce coliphage based Recreational Water Quality Criteria (RWQC) that will likely result in coliphage effluent limits for water resource recovery facilities (WRRFs). If implemented, strict coliphage effluent limits may force some WRRFs to not only upgrade disinfection processes but also upgrade secondary treatment processes to meet low coliphage effluent limits. For instance, conventional non-nitrifying activated sludge WRRFs with chlorine disinfection slowly inactivate coliphages when compared to traditional indicator bacteria. To further understand the fate and treatability of coliphages at WRRFs and to estimate the potential costs to comply with future coliphage limits, WE&RF is supporting a coliphage study. This abstract provides results from the first two objectives of the WE&RF study: 1) provide a key gaps analysis of the fate and treatability of coliphages in WRRFs, and 2) evaluate the fate of somatic coliphages, male specific coliphages, Enterococcus, and Escherichia coli in WRRFs of various configurations and various disinfectants.

For more information, please contact the author at

Hear about new publications with our email newsletter

We will never share your details with anyone else.


Newsletter Newsletter

Horizons Fall 2017 (pdf)

Horizons showcases significant water, wastewater, reuse, and stormwater projects and innovations that help our clients to achieve their goals, and can help you achieve yours. Articles are written by top engineers and process group leaders, demonstrating and explaining the beneficial application of a variety of technologies and tools.

View previous issues »