The Fate of Trace Organic Compounds in Treatment Wetlands
Over the past decade, our research group has developed analytical methods for quantifying the extremely low concentrations of organic compounds in municipal wastewater effluent and surface waters. As an alternative to using advanced treatment methods to remove these compounds, we have been studying the potential for using sunlight and microbes in wetlands to remove the compounds.
We recently developed a new treatment approach that we refer to as an open water unit process wetland. This system employs a geotextile liner to prevent the growth of rooted plants (i.e, macrophytes) in wetlands. The open water allows for photochemical transformation of compounds while a layer of microbes that accumulates above the liner causes the breakdown of the compounds. The open water wetland removes trace organic contaminants more efficiently than many of the existing vegetated wetlands and has proven to be an effective tool for protection of aquatic habitats and potable water reuse projects.< Back to previous page