The LIFE ECOGRANULARWATER Project is a “Drinking water” project approved within the “Environment and Resource Efficiency” focus area of the 2016 Call of the LIFE Programme.

It aims to demonstrate the efficiency of technology based on biological methods for the removal of nitrates, phosphates, pesticides and other pollutants from groundwater supplies for human consumption. The project proposes a low-cost technology solution for municipalities affected by this environmental problem.

The project will be implemented by a partnership integrated by the University of Granada (Spain), Aalto University (Finland), Construcciones Otero Company (Spain) and the Provincial Council of Granada (Spain), which acts as partnership coordinator.

The proposed technology will be installed in the municipality of Torre Cardela (Granada province), where high levels of nitrate concentration have been detected in the groundwater supply. At current, a reverse osmosis system is being used in compliance with the RD 140/2003, which establishes the health criteria for the quality of water used for human consumption, as well as Drinking Water Directive 98/83/UE and Directive 2013/39/UE, (amending Directives 2000/60/UE, Water Framework Directive, and 2008/15/UE priority substances in water policy). The project will be developed between the 1st of September 2017 and the 31st of October 2020.

Water bodies pollution by nitrates and other pollutants are mainly caused by excessive or inadequate use of fertilizers and plant-protection products in agriculture. Between 2011 and 2015 two of the partners of this project (Granada University and Provincial Council of Granada), together with two local companies (Paisajes del Sur and Bonterra Ibérica) carried out the EUTROMED LIFE project. Among others actions, preventive measures aimed to the optimization of nitrogen fertilization by the farmers were developed. The objective was to avoid nitrate pollution in water bodies. In this way, the Provincial Council of Granada has been working through new projects supported by the Network of Municipalities from Granada Province towards sustainability. More info at



LIFE ECOGRANULARWATER receives the virtual visit from the external monitor in june.

The health crisis has led to an adaptation of the visits to the LIFE projects by the external monitoring team. Thanks to the new communication technologies, last June 17 and 18, the LIFE ECOGRANULARWATER project received a virtual visit from Borja Domínguez, our external monitor.

Microorganisms continue confined in the bioreactor, removing nitrates.

In the first phase of the prototype, the efficiency of the system has been demonstrated. The granular system removes by 80% of the nitrates dissolved in the water.

We request to EASME the addition of a new partner: Gedar S.L. – Water and Waste Management.

The Provincial Council of Granada has sent all the required documentation to EASME to request the addition of GEDAR S.L. to the LIFE Project.

Suez Agua Concesiones Ibérica, S.L.U. Group and Hidralia, Gestión Integral de Aguas de Andalucía, S.A. are interested in the LIFE ECOGRANULARWATER project and are proposed as collaborators in the implementation of the System

Hidralia, Gestión Integral de Aguas de Andalucía, SA, and Suez Agua Concesiones Ibérica, SLU, bet on the technology of the LIFE ECOGRANULARWATER Project and offer the project’s Working Group its commitment to cooperation and collaboration in the implementation of the project once the testing period ends.

The University Institute of Water Research of the UGR participated in the 2nd BioRemid2019 congress in Porto (Portugal) with an Exhibition and a Poster of results

The University of Granada, through the Institute of Water Research of the University, showed in the 2nd Congress “International Meeting on New Strategies in Bioremediation Processes (BioRemid2019)”, located in Porto (Portugal), the results and the research progress achieved in the LIFE ECOGRANULARWATER project.

The Mayor of Humilladero (Málaga) visits the Pilot Plant in Torre Cardela, interested in knowing the prototype of the LIFE ECOGRANULARWATER project, installed for nitrate removal

One of the results that is expected to be achieved with the project is to know the economic cost of the treatment of a cubic meter of water with this biological technology, so that it can be assessed by other municipalities as a solution to the problem of nitrates in drinking water.