A new study shows that Lake Elliðavatn on the outskirts of Reykjavík is contaminated with fecal pollution measuring seven times the acceptable limit according to regulations on the prevention of water pollution. Minor fecal pollution was also found at several locations in Elliðaár River.
Archive photo of Elliðaár River. Photo by Páll Kjartansson.
Kristín Elísa Guðmundsdóttir, Master student in Environment and Natural Resources at the University of Iceland, presented the findings of her research yesterday.
In an interview with Fréttablaðið, she said it was particularly surprising that noroviruses were found in three places. According to Kristín, this is the first time that they have been detected in the lake or river.
The virus is only found in the human gut and it is therefore thought that sewage pollution has come into the river and lake.
According to water pollution limits, Lake Elliðavatn falls into the second last of fifth categories. Limits within the first two categories are considered acceptable.