Water, Wastewater & Stormwater

Oral

397495 - Algae as a Promoter of Disinfection in Eco-Engineered Wastewater Treatment Systems

Tuesday, June 5
2:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Location: Greenway EF
Co-Authors: Lei Liu, Kingston, Canada – Queen's University; Max Madill, Kingston, Canada – Queen's University; Rachel McConnell, Kingston, Canada – Queen's University; Marlee Sauder, Kingston, Canada – Queen's University; Geoffrey Hall, Kingston, Canada – Queen's University

In passive wastewater treatment systems, in particular, wastewater stabilization ponds (WSPs), extreme events of high algal activity are often observed, especially during the summer season, resulting from the extended hydraulic retention times associated with the design of these systems. At a WSP system located in Eastern Ontario, a strong correlation was found between algal growth and the increase in pH and dissolved oxygen (DO) (Spearman’s Rho of 0.82). Water net and filamentous algae collected from the system and cultivated in Bold's Basal Medium for a period of 6 days. The filamentous algae growth showed the ability to increase pH and DO from 6.18 to 10.10 and from 6.1 to 9.2 mg/L, respectively, while water net algae were able to elevate pH and DO levels from 6.04 to 8.97 and 6.2 to 7.5 mg/L, respectively. pH and DO levels increased to 9.5-11 and 8-22 mg/L during the 2016 treatment season as a result of algal blooms which covered 75% of the WSP. The statistical analysis showed strong negative correlations between pH and all selected indicator organisms including E. coli, total coliforms, Enterococci, Salmonella and Clostridium Perfringens, indicating the importance of algae-induced pH as a disinfection mechanism. Algae travel due to wind, also impacted nutrient recovery, pH and DO across these systems, greatly affecting effluent quality. Developing a better understanding of the role of algae in disinfection as well as nutrient cycling is essential for smaller, remote or rural communities that employ these systems as part of their wastewater treatment strategies.

Pascale Champagne


Queen's University

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