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An experimental study on the efficacy of aquatic fern (Salvinia molesta) in the treatment of blackwater effluent from a constructed wetland, Cagayan de Oro City, 2011

Author

Francis Dale  G. Acenas,
Liezel T. Morales,
Alessandra Kamille P. Mallari

Publication Information

Publication Type
Journal
Title
Xavier University - Ateneo de Cagayan Journal of Medicine
Frequency
Annual
Publication Date
January-December 2012
Volume
8
Page(s)
7-17

Abstract

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Blackwater effluent re-use has been the major contribution of established constructed wetlands, however as most bioremediation systems, current challenges still persist such as high counts of coliforms, high metallic ion contents, high plankton counts and suspended solids. The secondary filtration system of these bioremediation structures may require a tertiary step and or further chemical treatment of the final black water effluent.  Salvinia molesta, an aquatic fern has previously been determined to be effective in removing the above water particles. This study aims to determine if Salvinia molesta can be an alternative method for the tertiary step in constructed wetlands. The removal efficiency of the plant was determined via physical, microbiological and chemical analysis in an in-door set up. The general objective was to determine the effects of Salvinia molesta in the reduction of water pollutants in black water effluent, specifically; (1) determine the changes in the amounts of the following after a 15-day exposure to S. molesta to sulfates, dissolved oxygen, planktonic microorganisms, total suspended solids, hexavalent chromium, nitrates, phosphates, and fecal coliforms. (2) Compute removal efficiencies (%) of the above-mentioned parameters.  Two large wide-open mouth plastic basins (control and experimental) were filled with black water effluent obtained from constructed wetland, and were set up in an indoor setting with regular sunlight exposure. Water analysis was performed on 0th, 5th, 10th, and 15th, day intervals. 


          After the 15th day exposure, results show S. molesta has 74.70 % reduction in dissolved oxygen, 48.95% in fecal coliforms and 30.77 % in total suspended solids. There were no noted reduction in pH, sulfates, phosphates, nitrates, and planktons. There is a significant difference between mean values of pH, sulfates, nitrates, dissolved oxygen, fecal coliforms, total suspended solids, except for chromium (VI) ions from Day 0 and Day 15 within each group.

Objectives

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This project propose a more economical solution, by determining the effect of a local aquatic plant (S. molesta) to determine its potential in improving the quality of effluent water from a highly established treatment system. The data will serve as a knowledge-based foundation for future incorporation of tertiary treatment in constructed wetlands. Specifically, this study aims to determine the efficacy of S. molesta in the reduction constructed wetland effluent.


 
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