Staged, Aerobic Constructed Wetlands to Treat Acid Drainage: Case History of Fabius Impoundment 1 and Overview of the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Program

By Gerald A. Moshiri

in Constructed Wetlands for Water Quality Improvement

Staged, aerobic constructed wetlands offer an inexpensive, natural, low maintenance, and potentially long-term solution to treating acid drainage without chemical additives. Isolated deep pockets up to 2.0 m were included in many cells to provide for aquatic fauna refuge in drought events. The system treats acid seepage emanating from an earth dike impounding 16 ha of coal slurry at Tennessee Valley Authorities (TVA’s) reclaimed Fabius Coal Preparation Plant in Jackson County, Alabama. TVA’s experience suggests that these numbers may represent an upper-limit sizing criteria for aerobic wetlands as they are currently designed and constructed. TVA’s encouraging results suggest that staged treatment wetlands systems are preferred designs potentially capable of treating poor-quality acid drainage. Such staged treatment may consist of: an initial anaerobic limestone trench at the source of the seepage to passively add alkalinity; a large, deep settling basin to accumulate oxidized and precipitated Fe sludges; and a two- or three-cell constructed wetlands for Mn and further Fe removal.

Tropical Wetlands – Innovation in Mapping and Management

Proceedings of the International Workshop on Tropical Wetlands: Innovation in Mapping and Management, October 19-20, 2018, Banjarmasin, Indonesia

Edited By Yiyi Sulaeman, Laura Poggio, Budiman Minasny, Dedi Nursyamsi

in Tropical Wetlands - Innovation in Mapping and Management

This book contains papers presented at the International Workshop on Tropical Wetlands, held in Banjarmasin, Indonesia. This workshop discussed wetland mapping and characterization as well as wetland management for sustainable agriculture. This volume contains selected papers on tropical wetlands, more specifically, peatland, tidal land, and acid sulphate soils.

This book presents an international overview of wetland and peatland mapping experiences from Indonesia, Congo, Brazil, Australia, and Scotland. Several innovative techniques are discussed, including integrated digital soil mapping and remote sensing techniques, as well as geodatabase processing and field surveying. This book further discussed tropical wetland management for agriculture as practiced in Indonesia, Vietnam, and Thailand.

The contents of this book are suitable and should be a good reference for those who are involved in research, development, and management of tropical wetland, including academics, soil scientists, environmentalists, researchers, agriculturists, students, agri-businessmen, policy makers, land managers and farmers.

Constructed Wetlands for Wastewater Treatment

Municipal, Industrial and Agricultural

Edited By Donald A. Hammer

in Constructed Wetlands for Wastewater Treatment

Both practical and theoretical, this book provides the basic principles of soil chemistry, hydrology, wetland ecology, microbiology, vegetation and wildlife as a sound introduction to this innovative technology to treat toxic wastewaters and sludges. The use of wetlands for acid mine drainage, and metals removal in municipal, urban runoff, and industrial systems is discussed. Case histories are also presented, demonstrating specific types of constructed wetlands and applications to municipal wastewater, home sites, coal and non-coal mining, coal-fired electric power plants, chemical and pulp industry, agriculture, landfill leachate, and urban stormwater. Construction and management guidelines are clearly explained, providing information on applicable policies and regulations, siting and construction, and operations and monitoring of constructed wetlands treatment systems. Recent theoretical and empirical results from operating systems and research facilities, including such new applications as nutrient removal from eutrophic lakes and urban stormwater treatment within highway rights-of-way, are included. This book is an ideal resource for wastewater treatment plants, consulting engineers, federal and state regulators, industrial environmental managers, municipalities, environmental health professionals, and ecologists.

Ecosystem services of wetlands

Published in International Journal of Biodiversity Science, Ecosystem Services & Management

William J. MitschBlanca Bernal & Maria E. Hernandez

Wetlands are among the most valuable ecosystems on the planet. As described in Mitsch and Gosselink (2015, pp. 3–4) and earlier editions:

Although the value of wetlands for fish and wildlife protection has been known for a century, some of the other benefits have been identified more recently. Wetlands are sometimes described as kidneys of the landscape because they function as the downstream receivers of water and waste from both natural and human sources. They stabilize water supplies, thus mitigating both floods and drought. They have been found to cleanse polluted waters, protect shorelines, and recharge groundwater aquifers. Wetlands also have been called nature’s supermarkets because of the extensive food chain and rich biodiversity that they support. They play major roles in the landscape by providing unique habitats for a wide variety of flora and fauna. Now that we have become concerned about the health of our entire planet, wetlands are being described by some as important carbon sinks and climate stabilizers on a global scale.

Wetlands continue to be cited as the most valuable parts of our landscape in ecosystem service assessments (Costanza et al. 1997, 2014; Mitsch & Gosselink 2000; De Groot et al. 2012; McInnes 2013). Costanza et al. (1997) used ecosystem unit estimators that showed that wetlands, especially inland swamps and floodplains, were considerably more valuable than lakes and rivers, forests, and grasslands (Table 1). Only coastal estuaries had higher unit values than inland and coastal wetlands from the 1997 study. Costanza et al. (2014) revisited the calculations of the 1997 paper, using some revised unit values from De Groot et al. (2012). The new unit values for selected ecosystems are given in the last column in Table 1. The inland swamps/floodplain values stayed approximately the same as they were in the 1997 paper, while the tidal marsh/mangroves unit value increased 14-fold, ‘largely due to new studies of the storm protection, erosion protection, and waste treatment values’ of these coastal wetlands (Costanza et al. 2014, p. 155).

Design of a novel constructed treatment wetland system with consideration of ambient landscape

Published in International Journal of Environmental Studies

Xiaohong ZhaoYaqian ZhaoJinxuan WangXiangxin MengBinling ZhangRixia ZhangTong WangNingjun HuangSheping WangWenke Wang 

A ‘fan-shape’ constructed wetland (CW) system is designed to treat domestic wastewater as well as to provide an aesthetically pleasing and environmentally sensitive landscape with ornamental plants for recreation. The system consists of two-stage subsurface horizontal flow CW cells with dewatered alum sludge cakes as the main substrate to ensure the treatment efficiency. The system is located in a new countryside village in Northwest China. The paper presents the design considerations of the CW together with the surrounding landscape to create an integrated CW (ICW). The study attempts to show how the wastewater infrastructure of CW can be an attractive feature in a community; bringing utility and beauty together, and serving needs for education, recreation and habitat conservation, through integrating engineering and landscape design.

Conceptualizing resilience in temporary wetlands

Published in Inland Waters

David G. Angeler

Resilience research is gaining center stage at a time when fast social–ecological changes impose serious sustainability challenges to human societies and ecosystems. This paper conceptualizes resilience in temporary wetlands. A model is presented that demonstrates adaptive capacity, recovery, thresholds, regime shifts, and alternative regimes concepts, exemplified using wildland fires and their mitigation. The paper concludes with an examination of management challenges. Creating self-organizing temporary wetland landscapes similar to those existing prior to degradation may be elusive. Social–ecological tradeoffs may limit restoration and conservation.

Relationships between algal primary productivity and environmental variables in tropical floodplain wetlands

Published in Inland Waters

Bianca MolinariBen Stewart-Koster

Floodplain wetlands are among the most productive and biodiverse ecosystems on Earth and provide a major subsidy of food resources for consumers in river systems. The basal energy source for those consumers in many systems comes from aquatic algal production influenced by different characteristics of the floodplain environment. Our aim was to estimate relationships between algal productivity and environmental variables in the channels and wetlands of the Mitchell River floodplain in tropical Australia. We measured physical, chemical, and biological variables in a range of different wetland types (palustrine, lacustrine, and riverine) and different habitat types (emergent macrophytes, floating macrophytes, submerged macrophytes, and open water). The most productive areas were found among riverine wetlands and submerged habitats. The statistical models showed that habitat type and turbidity alone can predict algal productivity with reasonable accuracy (pseudo-R2 = 0.35, n = 63). Importantly, those attributes can be measured using remote sensing, and hence the model can be used to predict algal productivity over wider spatial scales and identify important “hotspot” areas of primary productivity that sustain aquatic food webs. Through this approach we can inform current conservation and water planning frameworks to manage the impact of human development on the productivity of wetlands at large spatial scales.