Using a constructed wetland for non-point source pollution control and river water quality purification: a case study in Taiwan

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Courtesy of IWA Publishing

The Kaoping River Rail Bridge Constructed Wetland, which was commissioned in 2004, is one of the largest constructed wetlands in Taiwan. This multi-function wetland has been designed for the purposes of non-point source (NPS) pollutant removal, wastewater treatment, wildlife habitat, recreation, and education. The major influents of this wetland came from the local drainage trench containing domestic, agricultural, and industrial wastewaters, and effluents from the wastewater treatment plant of a paper mill. Based on the quarterly investigation results from 2007 to 2009, more than 96% of total coliforms (TC), 48% of biochemical oxygen demand (BOD), and 40% of nutrients (e.g. total nitrogen, total phosphorus) were removed via the constructed wetland system. Thus, the wetland system has a significant effect on water quality improvement and is capable of removing most of the pollutants from the local drainage system before they are discharged into the downgradient water body. Other accomplishments of this constructed wetland system include the following: providing more green areas along the riversides, offering more water assessable eco-ponds and eco-gardens for the public, and rehabilitating the natural ecosystem. The Kaoping River Rail Bridge Constructed Wetland has become one of the most successful multi-function constructed wetlands in Taiwan. The experience obtained from this study will be helpful in designing similar natural treatment systems for river water quality improvement and wastewater treatment.

Keywords: constructed wetland, non-point source pollution, river pollution

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