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In the news: Wisconsin wastewater initiative recognized for excellence

October 4, 2023

WBAY_COVID_10.4.2023_ScreengrabOctober 2023 - WBAY featured NEW Water for our participation in the COVID in wastewater study in Wisconsin, which has earned national attention for excellence.

Excerpts from WBAY story are found below. To read their full story, please visit: WI Covid Wastewater Surveillance Program recognized for excellence by CDC  (

Wisconsin adopted a wastewater monitoring program specific to COVID early in the pandemic, trying to figure out how to recover a virus.

“We know how to filter wastewater and get all the bacteria out. That’s super simple, because they’re kind of big, they stick on filters. Viruses are tiny, they’re much more sparse, so we had to try a lot of methods,” said McLellan.

NEW Water, the brand of the Green Bay Metropolitan Sewerage District, recognized the importance of this effort and started preserving samples while waiting for a method.

“We would freeze them and then once they were ready for them that they started testing,” said Sharon Thieszen, NEW Water field services manager.

NEW Water continues to send samples for testing every week. The results are entered into state and national databases for monitoring. It’s a tool that put wastewater management in a whole new role in public safety.

- From WBAY, October 2023

Learn more about NEW Water's response to COVID-19 >> 

Check out the Wisconsin COVID-19 Wastewater Monitoring Network dashboard by sewershed from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services.

Topics: COVID-19, News

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