Wetlands constitute one of the most prolific yet vulnerable ecosystems of the environment (Bassi, Kumar, Sharma, & Saradhi, 2014). They have a unique underlying ecological signature. They play a significant role in sustaining biodiversity and human development (Söderqvist, Mitsch, & Turner, 2000). Climate change and intense human activity is responsible for intense pressure on this critical ecological environment (Davidson, 2014). It has led to destruction of more than half of the available wetland in the last century and half. Wetlands of the river constitute a buffer of aquatic and nutrient component in the ecological segment and hence assume vital significance (Wantzen & Riparian, 2008). However riparian wetlands often face threats due to water supply and hydroelectric projects due to anthropological activity and demand.
This leads to shift in hydrological regime, eutrophication of the wetlands, enhanced nutrient enrichment that leads to loss of water quality, increased salinity and significant increase in pollution caused by organic substances, pesticides due to agricultural activities and heavy metals (Martínez-Santos, De Stefano, Llamas, & Martínez-Alfaro, 2008) (Verones, Bartl, Pfister, Vílchez, & Hellweg, 2012) (Li, Sharp, & Drewes, 2016) (Tian, Wu, Yang, & Zhou, 2016) (Wu, Yang, Tian, Huang, Zhou, & Zhang, 2018). The principal constituent of wetland is its aquatic component. Water quality not only signifies the ability of water to maintain the industrial applications and activities, it also signifies the ability of water to sustain the function of ecosystem and the associated biodiversity. The quality and suitability of water to be able to sustain the above mentioned activities is determined by the concentration of organic and inorganic component present in it and the degradation of which severely affects the fragile ecological balance associated with it. One of the major pollutants that degrade this fragile ecological balance is caused by the increased presence of heavy metals.
Heavy metals significantly alter aquatic quality in an adverse manner and alter the trophic architecture and activities of ecological communities. There different routes by which heavy metals gain entry into wetlands. In comparison to chemical pollutants, it is not possible to remove heavy metals by decomposition that occurs by natural methods. Presence of even trace amount of heavy metals poses significant risk to human health and wellbeing as well as the fragile aquatic ecosystem. This makes presence of heavy metal a serious environmental challenge. Hence it is of extreme importance to investigate concentration of trace elements in the wetlands, their distribution pattern, origins and the risk to health that it poses to understand the risk to health posed by heavy metals and to mitigate pollution caused by these pollutants. There are significant advantages associated with mitigation of the environmental challenge posed by heavy metal pollution. Clean wetlands with healthy aquatic environment leads to positive ecological outcomes. Apart from heavy metal and associated pollution there is the threat of microbiological contamination.
Both heavy metal and microbiological contamination is a function of accelerated economic activities and the discharge of untreated wastewater into freshwater aquatic environment. This untreated wastewater includes wastewater generated from industrial activity, pollution caused by increased agricultural practices, sewage water generated from domestic environment and increased fragmentation of water bodies due to increased demand of land and freshwater due to anthropological intervention. Hence there is an urgent need for remedial action to salvage the wastewater, assess and restore its quality and evaluate the microbiological and heavy metal component of wetlands for assessment. This research ais to investigfate removal of toxic waste including heavy metals and microbial contamination by use of a microbiological remediation technology. The parameters that were assessed for determination of pollution are dissolved oxygen (DO), ammonium nitrogen ( NH3-N), chemical oxygen demand (COD0, and average degradation rate of total phosphorus (TP).
The evaluation is carried out in the chengnan river area of china which is twelve kilometer long with a catchment area of approximately sixty three square kilometer. The river flows through the pukou district and along the river there are several factors that are responsible for pollution. These include trench for flood discharge, drainage infrastructure including drains and pumping stations and more than a hundred sewage outlets. There is a huge pressure of population with high degree of construction activity leading to enormous amount of both industrial and human waste flowing into the river. It is an ideal representative of urban polluted river.
Quality assessment and remediation:
Ammonium nitrogen index is used as measure of pollution. the figures for ammonium nitrogen index, TP and COD often is observed to be more than 2.0,0.4 and 40 mg/L. The river has low fluidity making it an ideal target for microbial remediation process. The microbial remediation agent selected for this purpose is referred as HP-RPE-3 compound microbial agent that is composed of microorganisms like photosynthetic bacteria, bacillus, micrococcus, lactic acid bacteria yeasts, enzymes acetobacter and similar one hundred types of bacterial family that selected from natural environment domestication technology and unique enzyme technology. A microbial accelerating protocol is also developed by utilization different kinds of enzyemes, amino acids vitamins, humic acid that provide nutrition to the bacterial components of the HP-RPE-3 compound microbial agent in order to rapidly enhance the natural biological reactions responsible for the microbial purification and verification of the selected wetland ecosystem.
HP-RPe-3 microbial agent is usually stored in a powder form, which is made into a solution by mixing with de-ionized water in a 1:4 ratio. This solution is mixed with the sludge water recovered from the wetland river. Several monitoring points are set up for water quality monitoring. As mentioned in the previous section the parameters for assessment were factors like DO, NH3-N, TP, and COD. DO was measured using electrochemical probe method. NH3-N was assessed using salicylic acid as chemical marker using spectrophotometric assay. COD was assessed using acidic potassium permanganate method.
Pollution removal rate was assayed by the average concentrations of the significant water quality parameters previous to and following microbial treatment. It is represented by figures 1,2,3,4. Figure one depicts removal of DO. Figure 2 depicts removal of NH3-N. Figure three depicts removal of TP and figure 4 depicts removal of COD.
Bassi, N., Kumar, D., Sharma, A., & Saradhi, P. (2014). Wetlands constitute one of the most prolific yet vulnerable ecosystems of the environment. Journal of Hydrology: Regional Studies , 1-19.
Davidson, N. (2014). How much wetland has the world lost? Long-term and recent trends in global wetland area. Mar. Freshw .
Li, D., Sharp, J., & Drewes, J. (2016). Influence ofWastewater Discharge on the Metabolic Potential of the Microbial Community in River Sediments. Microb. Ecol , 78-86.
Martínez-Santos, P., De Stefano, L., Llamas, M., & Martínez-Alfaro, P. (2008). Wetland Restoration in the ManchaOccidental Aquifer, Spain: A Critical Perspective on Water, Agricultural, and Environmental Policies. Restor.Ecol , 511-521.
Söderqvist, T., Mitsch, W., & Turner, R. (2000). Valuation of wetlands in a landscape and institutional perspective. Ecol. Econ , 1-6.
Tian, B., Wu, W., Yang, Z., & Zhou, Y. (2016). Drivers, trends, and potential impacts of long-term coastal reclamation inChina from 1985 to 2010. Estuarine Coast. Shelf Sci , 83-90.
Verones, F., Bartl, K., Pfister, S., Vílchez, R., & Hellweg, S. (2012). Modeling the Local Biodiversity Impacts of Agricultural Water Use: Case Study of a Wetland in the Coastal Arid Area of Peru. Environ. Sci. Technol. , 4966-4974.
Wantzen, K., & Riparian, W. (2008). Wetlands. Encyclopedia of Ecology. Cambridge: Academic Press.
Wu, W., Yang, Z., Tian, B., Huang, Y., Zhou, Y., & Zhang, T. (2018). Impacts of coastal reclamation on wetlands: Loss,resilience, and sustainable management. Estuarine Coast. Shelf Sci , 153-161.
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