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Environmental impact assessment (EIA) of effluents from constructed wetlands on water quality of receiving watercourses

Natalia Carolina Donoso Pantoja (UGent) , Pieter Boets (UGent) , Evi Michels (UGent) , Peter Goethals (UGent) and Erik Meers (UGent)
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Abstract
The amount of animal manure produced in Flanders—Belgium by intensive animal farming generates a surplus that needs to be treated in order to achieve quality objectives set by the Nitrates Directive (91/676/ EEC) and the European Water Framework Directive (2000/60/EU). After the physical separation and biological nitrification/denitrification processes, the liquid fraction of manure can be cost-efficiently and effectively treated by constructed wetlands (CWs). However, current discharge criteria limits do not evaluate whether nutrient loads from specific point sources (such as CWs) affect the water quality of their receiving waterway. Thus, we investigated whether a site-specific analysis, based on local environmental conditions, would yield more relevant discharge thresholds. In the present study, a standardized framework was developed for environmental impact assessment (EIA) of effluents from CWs on the water quality of receiving watercourses. This framework was tested as a case study on a manure treatment installation located in Langemark—Belgium. The effect of different impact scenarios on water quality and flow of the effluent and the receiving waterway was studied. Standardized EIA guidelines and sensitivity analyses were applied to determine the expected impacts of total nitrogen (TN), total phosphorous (P), chlorides (Cl−) and sulphates (SO42−) on the receiving watercourse. From this study, we concluded that the methodology currently applied requires adaptation when assessing the discharge from wetlands as current estimations of impact are overly conservative when compared with actual impact. In addition, results showed that expected impact might be mitigated by differentiating discharge limits between dry and wet periods.
Keywords
Constructed Wetlands, EU Nitrates Directive, Environmental impact assessment (EIA), Mitigating measures

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Chicago
Donoso Pantoja, Natalia Carolina, Pieter Boets, Evi Michels, Peter Goethals, and Erik Meers. 2015. “Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of Effluents from Constructed Wetlands on Water Quality of Receiving Watercourses.” In Wetland Pollutant Dynamics and Control, 6th International Symposium, Abstracts.
APA
Donoso Pantoja, N. C., Boets, P., Michels, E., Goethals, P., & Meers, E. (2015). Environmental impact assessment (EIA) of effluents from constructed wetlands on water quality of receiving watercourses. Wetland Pollutant Dynamics and Control, 6th International symposium, Abstracts. Presented at the 6th International symposium on Wetland Pollutant Dynamics and Control (WETPOL 2015) ; Annual conference of the Constructed Wetland Association.
Vancouver
1.
Donoso Pantoja NC, Boets P, Michels E, Goethals P, Meers E. Environmental impact assessment (EIA) of effluents from constructed wetlands on water quality of receiving watercourses. Wetland Pollutant Dynamics and Control, 6th International symposium, Abstracts. 2015.
MLA
Donoso Pantoja, Natalia Carolina, Pieter Boets, Evi Michels, et al. “Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of Effluents from Constructed Wetlands on Water Quality of Receiving Watercourses.” Wetland Pollutant Dynamics and Control, 6th International Symposium, Abstracts. 2015. Print.
@inproceedings{6997981,
  abstract     = {The amount of animal manure produced in
Flanders---Belgium by intensive animal farming generates
a surplus that needs to be treated in order to achieve
quality objectives set by the Nitrates Directive (91/676/
EEC) and the European Water Framework Directive
(2000/60/EU). After the physical separation and biological
nitrification/denitrification processes, the liquid fraction
of manure can be cost-efficiently and effectively
treated by constructed wetlands (CWs). However, current
discharge criteria limits do not evaluate whether nutrient
loads from specific point sources (such as CWs) affect the
water quality of their receiving waterway. Thus, we investigated
whether a site-specific analysis, based on local
environmental conditions, would yield more relevant
discharge thresholds. In the present study, a standardized
framework was developed for environmental impact assessment
(EIA) of effluents from CWs on the water
quality of receiving watercourses. This framework was
tested as a case study on a manure treatment installation
located in Langemark---Belgium. The effect of different
impact scenarios on water quality and flow of the effluent
and the receiving waterway was studied. Standardized
EIA guidelines and sensitivity analyses were applied to
determine the expected impacts of total nitrogen (TN),
total phosphorous (P), chlorides (Cl\ensuremath{-}) and sulphates
(SO42\ensuremath{-}) on the receiving watercourse. From this study,
we concluded that the methodology currently applied
requires adaptation when assessing the discharge from
wetlands as current estimations of impact are overly
conservative when compared with actual impact. In addition,
results showed that expected impact might be
mitigated by differentiating discharge limits between
dry and wet periods.},
  author       = {Donoso Pantoja, Natalia Carolina and Boets, Pieter and Michels, Evi and Goethals, Peter and Meers, Erik},
  booktitle    = {Wetland Pollutant Dynamics and Control, 6th International symposium, Abstracts},
  keyword      = {Constructed Wetlands,EU Nitrates Directive,Environmental impact assessment (EIA),Mitigating measures},
  language     = {eng},
  location     = {Cranfield, UK},
  title        = {Environmental impact assessment (EIA) of effluents from constructed wetlands on water quality of receiving watercourses},
  year         = {2015},
}