Growth of Arundo donax L. and Cyperus alternifolius L. in a horizontal subsurface flow constructed wetland using pre-treated urban wastewater - a case study in Sicily (Italy)

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Abstract

Constructed wetland systems for wastewater treatment represent an excellent opportunity for the recovery of water resources in those areas subject to prolonged periods of water shortage. This paper presents a study of the efficiency of a pilot horizontal subsurface flow system using pre-treated urban wastewater from a small town in the West of Sicily. The pilot system had a total surface area of 100 m2 with two units. Unit A was planted with Arundo donax L. and unit B with Cyperus alternifolius L. The HLR was 10 cm d-1. The main objectives of research were to evaluate the growth and biomass yield of two macrophytes and determine the removal efficiency of physical-chemical and microbiological parameters. The results showed excellent organic pollutant removal (BOD5 70-72%, COD 61-67%) whilst macronutrient removal was found to be lower (TKN 47-50%, TP 43-45%). Pathogen load removal was found to be approximately 90% but Escherichia coli concentrations at outflow were not within Italian legislative limits. Giant reed showed higher nitrogen content in the biomass (average 28.9 ± 1.8 g m-2 year-1 for aboveground and 63.8 ± 1.8 g m-2 year-1 for belowground parts) than umbrella sedge. The treated wastewater was used to irrigate parkland areas.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)7447-7459
Numero di pagine13
RivistaDesalination and Water Treatment
Volume51
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Water Science and Technology
  • Ocean Engineering
  • Pollution

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