Wetlands remove pollution, cost less than treatment plants

Removing wastewater pollution through wetlands is, in at least one scenario, more cost effective than upgrading a treatment plant, a case study in the United States has found.

Researchers examining wastewater treatment methods in Bureau County, Illinois found that it was cheaper to build additional wetlands on farms rather than upgrade existing plants.

While the wastewater treatment plants were capable of removing some nitrogen, expensive upgrades were required to eliminate larger amounts of the pollutant.

The study analysed the size of land needed to reduce nitrogen pollution, the costs of wetland restorations, and the opportunity costs to landowners from no longer farming the new wetland areas.

Read more at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign