How a sewage test may flush out the true rate of COVID-19 infection

ACT researchers are making sure their water doesn't go to waste, writes Antony Scholefield

Of all the interventions to suppress COVID-19, one that captured the imagination of journalists was, inevitably, about sewage.

The plan was to test wastewater for traces of SARS-CoV-2 RNA as a potential early warning system if the virus was circulating unnoticed.

In July, the Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra revealed the results of its first sewage testing project, carried out at 25 sites in the ACT in May.

They found no trace of SARS-CoV-2, which was unsurprising, as the ACT was declared coronavirus-free in that period.