ERG-Supported COVID-19 Wastewater Surveillance Program Honored with Innovation Award

A gloved hand holding a dropper picks up COVID-19 wastewater samples in a labortory.

Since late 2020, ERG and sister company PG Environmental have been helping the New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) combat COVID-19 transmission by conducting surveillance to detect COVID-19 in wastewater from congregate settings, such as shelters and correctional facilities. Detecting the virus in wastewater prompts further action—such as personal testing—to prevent future outbreaks. Due to the project’s success, NMED developed a video in response to the Environmental County of States’ (ECOS) request for Innovation Videos to feature during their fall meeting. The video explains the program and how it is a critical tool for the state in slowing the spread of COVID-19 and saving lives. In September 2021, ECOS selected NMED’s video for its Water Innovation Award.