Bamboo for greywater treatment (constructed wetland)

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  • kenatu
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Re: Bamboo for Constructed Wastewater Forest

Dear colleagues,
I am pleasure to join this forum, currently i am Ph.D student and studying water and health program. I decided to study bamboo for the treatment of municipal waste water. As i have read some literature there are many species of bamboo growing at different area and climate. Here in Ethiopia there are two species of bamboo grown naturally in tropical and subtropical region. The constructed wetland used for grey water treatment was successful as Ralf’s studied. Now i want to know the interaction of bamboo with water and gravel (substrate) in constructed wetland on the growth and sustainability of bamboo for treating the waste water.
With regard ,
Kenatu Angassa wakuma
PhD Student in Water and Health
Ethiopian Institute of Water Resources
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  • sjoerdnienhuys
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Re: Bamboo for Constructed Wastewater Forest

Bamboo grows in a variety of climate zones, while some varieties do very well at higher altitudes in the tropics because of the lower temperatures. Several varieties survive winters in sea-climate zones. The best quality structural bamboos such as the Cana Guadua grows in temperate climate zones of the Andes. This we used building three and four story houses on slopes in Columbia. In Mozambique, being a warmer climate, we used other thinner varieties to build schools; the thick varieties were not anymore available due to excesive harvesting for fuelwood.
To promote bambu as a effluent filtration medium a guidelist should become available on bambu types per climate zone,
and in addition the produts that can be made from the bambu.
Local handicraft markets and construction industry are widely using bambu when available.
Sjoerd from The Netherlands.
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  • AquaVerde
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Re: Bamboo for Constructed Wastewater Forest

EU-French project on bamboo to treat wastewater: cordis.europa.eu/news/rcn/36167_en.html
The EU-funded project BRITER-WATER ('Market replication of bamboo remediation of food industry effluent grey water for re-use') looked at developing and demonstrating an innovative wastewater treatment system using bamboo.
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  • fppirco
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Re: Bamboo for Constructed Wastewater Forest

Dear Ralf

Thanks alot for your information ,first of all I could not found your comment link ,second I like to know about Bamboo characteristics and cultivation conditions is it possible application in semi and arid region .

with best regards

Mohammad Mojtabaei
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Mashhad,Iran
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++++++++++++
Response by moderator (EvM): you need to scrol up in this thread to see Ralf's earlier posting. As the thread is now so long that it's on 2 pages, you need to click on the first page to see it.
Researcher and consultant

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  • smejia
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Re: Bamboo for Constructed Wastewater Forest

Is amazing what are you telling us about bamboo application, I would like to know more about this issue, and explore its use in Nicaragua.

regards

Sandra Mejia

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Re: Bamboo for Constructed Wastewater Forest

Dear Colleagues,

Dear Taber, I like your approach very much

trying to keep our treatment designs 'as simple as possible but not simpler'

Just a comment on plants & CW's:
I learned approx. 95% of aerobic treatment "work" in CW (like in trickling filter, disks and so on) done by Biofilm (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biofilm). Sand and gravel is a grew carrier for biofilm.
The plants have approx 5% of nutrients uptake. In cold climatic zone the CW's do their "job" as well during winter time without help of plants.

I know at least one German CW-system which is purposely running "only" on Biofilm without any plants support, the "Launhardt - Reaktor" (DIBT-authorized) is designed unfortunately with two pumps (...not keeping treatment designs 'as simple as possible!):


Bamboo are "just" one of many plants, but with the advantages of being useful for building purposes too and last not least looking nice too.

Regards,
Detlef SCHWAGER
www.aqua-verde.de, AquaVerde Ltd. Zanzibar
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  • Taber
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Re: Bamboo for Constructed Wastewater Forest

Dear Ralf-

I remember your 2012 posting & video well.
Do you know of a collated listing of species, form and habitat for those that are most useful? Here in Cambodia and elsewhere, specific species are used for specific purposes while many other species are not so useful.

For constructed wetlands in regions with a significant dry season//wet season, the dry season is most problematic. I think bamboo beds could be a good venture to explore for grey water, due to their general water tolerance.
R. Taber Hand, Ph.D.
Founding Director
Wetlands Work! Ltd.
Phnom Penh, Cambodia

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  • JKMakowka
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Re: Bamboo for Constructed Wastewater Forest

Elisabeth asked me to post some further details about HORIZONT3000's constructed wetland activities. HORIZONT3000 and BBM (with funding through the Austrian Development Agency, Drei Koenigs Aktion (DKA) and Medicor Foundation Lichtenstein) has been supporting various hospitals in Northern Uganda with ecological rehabilitation of public buildings. This includes the construction of waste-water treatment and reuse equipment (but the main focus is actually solar PV electrification).

We recently had a conference in Gulu, Uganda and I had the chance to visit one of their newer systems in the St. Joseph hospital in Kitgum as part of that meeting. I have attached some pictures of the constructed wetland, the solar pump and the storage of treated water for irrigation.
I have also attached a presentation of one of the participants showing the oldest system (In St. Kizito Hospital) that has been running for about 15 years now, and which has transformed the previously very dry surroundings of the hospital in Karamoja dramatically. It also has pictures of the Napier grass (Elephant Grass) in grown states (about 3-4m high).

The elephant grass has to be cut regularly, and is usually given to the surrounding communities as livestock feed material (mostly goats and cows).

@ Elisabeth: if you need the contact details of our engineers from those projects or higher resolution pictures send me a PM.

P.S: St. Joseph hospital in Kitgum actually also has some nice composting toilets and a central composting site where there is currently some research on optimal composting of wet and dry toilet waste is done by the Appropriate Technology Center (ATC).
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  • joeturner
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Re: Bamboo for Constructed Wastewater Forest

Elisabeth, I've also been able to find two of the papers you mention above. I suspect that the others may be hard to find as they're conference papers rather than in journals.

"Urine Reuse as Fertilizer for Bamboo Plantations."

"A Contribution to Flood Management in European Cities through Bamboo Plantations."

and..

"human urine boosts bamboo biomass yield"

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  • JKMakowka
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Re: Bamboo for Constructed Wastewater Forest

Here in Uganda we (HORIZONT3000) have planted elephant grass in our vertical flow constructed wetlands (papyrus doesn't do too well in the vertical flow ones). Sugarcane actually grows well too, but we obviously don't recommend that.

Bamboo might be a nice alternative as it could be a source of woody material for charcoal production.

Edit: for those that wonder: www.sswm.info/category/implementation-to...short-rotation-plant

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  • joeturner
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Re: Bamboo for Constructed Wastewater Forest

In Northern Europe, wouldn't it make more sense to use Elephant Grass/Miscanthus? It grows pretty vigorously in the UK (I'm guessing also in Germany etc), pretty easy to harvest, tolerates the occasional wet etc.

Seems to me like you could do everything described above with miscanthus too.

It looks like there might be space for a looking for papers on Miscanthus for use in your factsheet, Elisabeth. For example this paper: ijs.cgpublisher.com/product/pub.272/prod.49

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  • Elisabeth
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Re: Bamboo for Constructed Wastewater Forest

Dear Ralf and others,

I would like to come back to this thread which you started a year ago.
Are there now any installations of constructed wetlands with bamboo plants for wastewater treatment in Germany or Europe (or even elsewhere that you know of) apart from the one shown in your video (this was probably the experimental constructed wetland by your PhD student Ndzana?).

Are there any open access publications on this? I checked your website, but strangely, the PhD thesis of Ndzana is not available for download here even though it's from 2012:
www.tuhh.de/aww/publikationen/dissertationen.html

Jean Emmanuel Ndzana: Ressourcenorientierte Sanitärtechnik mit einem Fokus auf Bambuspflanzen
Verteidigung: 15.10.2012, ISBN: 978-3-942768-07-8


I also looked at the publications of Ndzana and you, and none of them are available for download, apart from the one from 2009 which I find puzzling.

+++++++++
Ndzana, J.E.; Otterpohl, R. (2012): Human urine boosts bamboo biomass yield (Phyllostachys viridiglaucescens). In: Proceedings of the 9th World Bamboo Congress - Belgium 2012. The World Bamboo Organization (WBO) Antwerp, April 10 - 15, 2012 (1) 195-206

Ndzana, J.E.; Otterpohl, R. (2012): Essay on bamboo nutrient uptake. Posted presented at the 9th World Bamboo Congress - Belgium 2012, the World Bamboo Organization (WBO), Antwerp April 10 - 15, 2012

Ndzana, J.E.; Otterpohl, R. (2011): Bamboo biomass production as a function of human urine fertilization. Poster presented at the 19th European Biomass Conference and Exhibition - from Research to Industry and Markets, Jg. Berlin, June 6 - 10

Ndzana, J.E.; Schmitt, V.E.M; Otterpohl, R.; Kaltschmitt, M. (2011): Bamboo pellets from urine-fertilized bamboo plants. Poster presented at the 19th European Biomass Conference and Exhibition - from Research to Industry and Markets, Jg. Berlin, June 6 - 10

Ndzana, J.E. and Otterpohl, R. (2009): Bamboo Wastewater Treatment Concept for Energy Production and Climate Protection. Poster presented at: Workshop for Sustainable Value Chains

Ndzana, J.E. and Otterpohl, R. (2009): Urine Reuse as Fertilizer for Bamboo Plantations. Proceedings of the International Conference on Nutrient Recovery from Wastewater Streams, May 10

Ndzana, J.E. and Otterpohl, R. (2009): Treatment of urine derived from the Ecological Sanitation on bamboo plantations. Proceedings of the 1st IWA Development Congress. Water and Sanitation Services- What works for Developing Countries? Nov. 15

Ndzana, J.E., Otterpohl, R. (2009): A contribution to flood management in European cities through bamboo plantations. In: Proceedings of the 8th World Bamboo Congress, Sept. 16

+++++++++

Is this just a coincidence or is it because these bamboo constructed wetlands didn't work out so well? If the latter, then please tell us which problems occurred?

Finally, are they really "babmboo constructed wetlands" or rather "short rotation plants with bamboo"? I am confused where the "cut-off" is between a constructed wetland and a short rotation plant.

The reason why I am asking is because I am currently working for GIZ Morocco (Christine Werner) on 30 factsheets (4 pages each) in French on sanitation technologies for rural areas of Morocco (once the factsheets are completed, we will make them available also in the SuSanA library). One of the factsheets is on "Short rotation plantations" and Christine has requested me to add more information on bamboo as an interesting plant in this factsheet. This had reminded me of your post on the forum, and that's why I am here.

Funny: I just put this into Google: "bamboo constructed wetland" and guess what came up on top of the list? Your forum post from September 2012!

Regards,
Elisabeth
Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
Freelance consultant on environmental and climate projects
Located in Ulm, Germany
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