Developing Wastewater Sampling Plans to Monitor Public Health
With wastewater monitoring, the choice of where, when, and how to collect wastewater samples is critical, because it determines the population represented by wastewater data as well as the sensitivity of the laboratory test used to measure health markers. Further, the frequency and type of sample collected will affect the resolution and quality of information generated from the wastewater system. In practice, samples must be collected at locations where wastewater can be safely and reliably accessed, such as wastewater treatment plants, lift stations, or manholes. This brief highlights the following key considerations when developing a wastewater sampling program: (1) Designing a sampling plan - where and when to collect wastewater; (2) Sample collection types; (3) Adaptive sampling; and (4) Data quality and variability.