Comparison of interannual removal variation of various constructed wetland types.

Department of Biodiversity and Environmental Management, Faculty of Biologic and Environmental Sciences, University of León, Campus de Vegazana s/n, E-24071 León, Spain.
Science of The Total Environment (Impact Factor: 3.26). 05/2012; 430:174-83. DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2012.04.072
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Seven mesocosm-scale (1m(2)) constructed wetlands (CWs) of different configurations were operated outdoors for thirty-nine months under the same conditions to assess their ability to remove organic matter and nutrients from urban wastewaters. CWs differed in some design parameters, namely the presence of plants, the species chosen (i.e., Typha angustifolia or Phragmites australis), the flow configuration (i.e., surface flow or subsurface flow) and the presence/absence of a gravel bed. It was observed that, in general, removal efficiencies decreased with the aging of the system and that seasonality had a great influence on CWs. A comparison was made in order to figure out which kind of CW was more efficient for the removal of every pollutant in the long term. Planted systems were clearly better than unplanted systems even in winter. Efficiency differences among CWs were not extremely great, especially after a few years. However, some types of CWs were more adequate for the removal of certain pollutants. The effect of the aging on the main parameters involved in pollutant removal in CWs (temperature, pH, conductivity, dissolved oxygen concentration and redox potential) was assessed. The efficiency of CWs should not be evaluated based on short monitoring periods (1-2 years) after the start-up of the systems, but on longer periods.

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    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: The discharge of complex mixtures of nutrients, organic micropollutants, and antibiotic resistance genes from treated municipal wastewater into freshwater systems are global concerns for human health and aquatic organisms. Antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) are genes that have the ability to impart resistance to antibiotics and reduce the efficacy of antibiotics in the systems in which they are found. In the rural community of Grand Marais, Manitoba, Canada, wastewater is treated passively in a sewage lagoon prior to passage through a treatment wetland and subsequent release into surface waters. Using this facility as a model system for the Canadian Prairies, the two aims of this study were to assess: (a) the presence of nutrients, micropollutants (i.e., pesticides, pharmaceuticals), and ARGs in lagoon outputs, and (b) their potential removal by the treatment wetland prior to release to surface waters in 2012. RESULTS: As expected, concentrations of nitrogen and phosphorus species were greatest in the lagoon and declined with movement through the wetland treatment system. Pharmaceutical and agricultural chemicals were detected at concentrations in the ng/L range. Concentrations of these compounds spiked downstream of the lagoon following discharge and attenuation was observed as the effluent migrated through the wetland system. Hazard quotients calculated for micropollutants of interest indicated minimal toxicological risk to aquatic biota, and results suggest that the wetland attenuated atrazine and carbamazepine significantly. There was no significant targeted removal of ARGs in the wetland and our data suggest that the bacterial population in this system may have genes imparting antibiotic resistance. CONCLUSIONS: The results of this study indicate that while the treatment wetland may effectively attenuate excess nutrients and remove some micropollutants and bacteria, it does not specifically target ARGs for removal. Additional studies would be beneficial to determine whether upgrades to extend retention time or alter plant community structure within the wetland would optimize removal of micropollutants and ARGs to fully characterize the utility of these systems on the Canadian Prairies.
    Chemistry Central Journal 03/2013; 7(1):54. · 1.31 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Between 1978 and 2008, 13 avian botulism outbreaks were recorded in the wetlands of Mancha Húmeda (Central Spain). These caused the deaths of around 20,000 birds from over 50 species, including globally endangered white-headed ducks (Oxyura leucoceophala). Here, a significant association was found between the number of dead birds recorded in each botulism outbreak and the mean temperature in July (always >26°C). The presence of C. botulinum type C/D in wetland sediments was detected by real-time PCR (qPCR) in 5.8% of 207 samples collected between 2005 and 2008. Low concentrations of Cl(-) and high organic matter content in sediments were significantly associated with the presence of C. botulinum. Seventy five digestive tracts of birds found dead during botulism outbreaks were analysed; C. botulinum was present in 38.7% of them. The prevalence of C. botulinum was 18.2% (n = 22 pools) in aquatic invertebrates (Chironomidae and Corixidae) and 33.3% (n = 18 pools) in necrophagous invertebrates (Sarcophagidae and Calliphoridae), including two pools of adult necrophagous flies collected around bird carcasses. The presence of the bacteria in the adult fly form opens up new perspectives in the epidemiology of avian botulism since these flies may be transporting C. botulinum from one carcass to another.
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    ABSTRACT: Outdoor shallow wetland mesocosms, designed to simulate surface constructed wetlands to improve lagoon wastewater treatment, were used to assess the role of macrophytes in the dissipation of wastewater nutrients, selected pharmaceuticals, and antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs). Specifically, mesocosms were established with or without populations of Typha spp. (cattails), Myriophyllum sibiricum (northern water milfoil), and Utricularia vulgaris (bladderwort). Following macrophyte establishment, mesocosms were seeded with ARG-bearing organisms from a local wastewater lagoon, and treated with a single pulse of artificial municipal wastewater with or without carbamazepine, clofibric acid, fluoxetine, and naproxen (each at 7.6 μg/L), as well as sulfamethoxazole and sulfapyridine (each at 150 μg/L). Rates of pharmaceutical dissipation over 28 d ranged from 0.073 to 3.0 d− 1, corresponding to half-lives of 0.23 to 9.4 d. Based on calculated rate constants, observed dissipation rates were consistent with photodegradation driving clofibric acid, naproxen, sulfamethoxazole, and sulfapyridine removal, and with sorption also contributing to carbamazepine and fluoxetine loss. Of the seven gene determinants assayed, only two genes for both beta-lactam resistance (blaCTX and blaTEM) and sulfonamide resistance (sulI and sulII) were found in sufficient quantity for monitoring. Genes disappeared relatively rapidly from the water column, with half-lives ranging from 2.1 to 99 d. In contrast, detected gene levels did not change in the sediment, with the exception of sulI, which increased after 28 d in pharmaceutical-treated systems. These shallow wetland mesocosms were able to dissipate wastewater contaminants rapidly. However, no significant enhancement in removal of nutrients or pharmaceuticals was observed in mesocosms with extensive aquatic plant communities. This was likely due to three factors: first, use of naïve systems with an unchallenged capacity for nutrient assimilation and contaminant removal; second, nutrient sequestration by ubiquitous filamentous algae; and third, dominance of photolytic processes in the removal of pharmaceuticals, which overshadowed putative plant-related processes.
    Science of The Total Environment 01/2014; s 482–483:294–304. · 3.26 Impact Factor

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