Welcome to the Pollution Research Group
 Welcome to the Pollution Research Group

Welcome to the Pollution Research Group (PRG).

The PRG is a professional research centre housed in the basement of the Chemical Engineering building on the Howard College Campus of the University of KwaZulu-Natal and conducts innovative research projects on water resources, waste water reclamation, the impact of effluents on local environments, sanitation systems, and other water related environmental issues. A key aspect of the success of this research is the close collaboration of the PRG with the Water and Sanitation Unit (EWS) within the eThekwini Municipality.

On this web site you will find information on the various research projects undertaken by the PRG since its inception in the early 1970’s. This includes project summaries, reports, publications, presentations, photographs, links to project partners and much more.

Partnering for Success

In November of 2014, the PRG was awarded a capacity grant by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) to expand and upgrade the current laboratory facilities and office space. This capacity grant was supplemented in March 2015 with a further grant to cover the costs of the staff working on this project. The aim of the capacity grant is for the PRG to be in a position to assist other sanitation practitioners from all over the world in developing and testing innovative sanitation solutions for developing countries through laboratory analyses and field trials. Construction of the new facilities began in December 2015 and were completed mid 2017. Set-up and calibration of equipment will be finalized by the end of September 2017, while the new office space will be completed by the end of October 2017 (see laboratory photographs).
Following on from this upgrade, the PRG was awarded a new grant in June 2017 entitled “Capacity Building Support for Ongoing Prototype Testing Platform”. Under this programme the PRG will provide laboratory and technical support to other grantees in undertaking engineering field testing of their prototype sanitation systems in Durban in order to assess their feasibility, durability and robustness in the field. This project is undertaken in partnership with Khanyisa Projects and eThekwini Water and Sanitation. During 2017 and 2018, 4 prototype systems developed by grantees as part of the Revinvented Toilet Challege will be installed and tested in communities and households within eThekwini. A further prototype will be tested in conjunction with the South African Water Research Commission.

Articles on this programme can be found under the publicity link.

News from the Pollution Research Group

There is always something happening at the PRG - attending a conference or workshop, providing training in laboratory techniques, hosting visitors, travelling to other countries to consult, appearing in the media, upgrading our facilities – you can read all about these activities under the news link.

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The PRG undertake a number of projects funded by the South African Water Research Commission and are a recipient of various Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation grants. We also have a Memorandum of Agreement with eThekwini Water and Sanitation, to provide research support to their unit.
>> Discover our projects
PRG projects at UKZN