Maria de Fátima Nunes de Carvalho

Polytechnic Institute of Beja

Professional background: Maria de Fátima Nunes de Carvalho (PhD), Main Coordinating Professor at the Polytechnic Institute of Beja

Research focus: The practice of reusing treated domestic wastewater for agricultural purposes is gaining prominence as a sustainable solution to water scarcity. Common themes across several studies include the need for comprehensive assessments of treatment system performance, compliance with water quality standards and long-term impacts on soil and crop health. By reusing treated wastewater for irrigation the strain on freshwater resources is reduced and a new and consistent water supply for farming is created, advancing sustainable agriculture, and fostering environmental stewardship. Various decentralized treatment processes, including septic tanks, anaerobic digesters, constructed wetlands, and membrane bioreactors, can be employed to remove contaminants and ensure that treated water meets agricultural quality standards. These systems offer a localized approach to treating wastewater at or near its source, catering to smaller communities and rural areas. However, operational and maintenance issues, energy and resource requirements, as well as space requirements, are common limitations found in the implementation of decentralized systems. Each decentralized treatment technology requires, therefore, careful consideration of local conditions and treatment objectives to ensure successful and sustainable outcomes.

Key engagements: Maria de Fátima Carvalho (PhD) is a scientist specialising in the development of water treatment and reuse technologies. She developed and published works on easy-to-apply and cost-effective treatment technologies for domestic and agroindustrial wastewater with a focus on agricultural and hydroponic reuse. These technologies are based on immediate one-step lime precipitation and atmospheric CO2 carbonation. Some of her studies have also assessed the effect of these waters in the agronomic, chemical and sensory characteristics of the plants produced.

Maria de Fátima Nunes de Carvalho CV and a list of publications are available at