This work was aimed at performing an analysis of the integrated urban wastewater system (catchment area, sewer, WWTP, receiving water). It focused on analysing the substance fluxes going through the system to identify critical pathways of pollution, as well as assessing the effectiveness of energy consumption and operational/capital costs. Two different approaches were adopted in the study to analyse urban wastewater systems of diverse characteristics. In the first approach a wide ranged analysis of a system at river basin scale is applied. The Nete river basin in Belgium, a tributary of the Schelde, was analysed through the 29 sewer catchments constituting the basin. In the second approach a more detailed methodology was developed to separately analyse two urban wastewater systems situated within the Ruhr basin (Germany) on a river stretch scale. The paper mainly focuses on the description of the method applied. Only the most important results are presented. The main outcomes of these studies are: the identification of stressors on the receiving water bodies, an extensive benchmarking of wastewater systems, and the evidence of the scale dependency of results in such studies.

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