Nature-Based Solutions for Wastewater treatment

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  • katharinecross
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Nature-Based Solutions for Wastewater treatment

The recent “ Nature-BasedSolutions for Wastewater Treatment ” published by IWA Publishing provides a starting point to identify and compare NBS options that can be incorporated into domestic and municipal wastewater treatment processes, with an emphasis on the potential co-benefits. Building on the existing evidence base, peer-reviewed factsheets and case studies detail a selection of NBS as part of the process of treating domestic wastewater, while also providing ecological and social co-benefits. Case studies illustrate how these nature-based wastewater treatment approaches have been applied in practice and provide insights into the variety of potentially applicable solutions. The aim is for a wide variety of stakeholders to gain an initial understanding of the design parameters, removal efficiencies, costs, co-benefits for both people and nature and trade-offs for consideration in their local context. 
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  • goeco
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  • Self employed innovator with an interest in wastewater treatment systems and recycling of nutrients
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Re: Nature-Based Solutions for Wastewater treatment

Hi katharinecross,
Many thanks for the link. Follows is a critical review:

Although this book "serves as a compilation of technical references, case examples and guidance for applying nature-based solutions for treatment of domestic wastewater", it was with disappointment that I could not find a single reference made to vermifiltration. Vermifiltration, as a key nature based solution for treatment of domestic wastewater, is perhaps the single most "highly efficient contemporary treatment technology" available.  
Unfortunately, in my experience most sanitation practitioners and research providers haven't yet caught up with the play and "conventional wisdom" remains caught up in traditional technologies such as horizontal and vertical flow wetlands fed by Imhoff or septic tanks. These technologies have been around for some time and innovation tends to have mostly run its course, while the world yearns for something better. 

This book seems to mostly follow the traditional sanitation paradigm of settling sludge from wastewater followed by municipal (in this case land-based) treatment with "nutrient removal" to a level suitable for discharge to water bodies. My favourite quote: "Paradigms fall slowly, from the weight of repeated failure."

cheers
Dean
Dean Satchell, M For. Sc.
Vermifilter.com
www.vermifilter.com
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  • hajo
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  • retired in Germany... but still interested in water and sanitation... especially in OSS... and especially in Africa...
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Re: Nature-Based Solutions for Wastewater treatment

We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.
Albert Einstein

... the 'same kind of thinking' comprises what Dean says: ...  treatment with "nutrient removal" to a level suitable for discharge to water bodies...

... a new thinking should aim at 'making nutrients (and water) available to soils and plants'...  (like all animals do)...
We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.
Albert Einstein
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of a genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.
E.F. Schumacher
Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler. :-)
Albert Einstein
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  • Heiner
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  • I am a retired organic farmer and interested in nutrient cycles. As an volunteer I now travel mainly to poor countries and together with locals I would like to find new ways of sustainable agriculture. This is beyond the regulations of IFOAM.
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Re: Nature-Based Solutions for Wastewater treatment

I very much agree with both of you! I shared lots of online meetings during the last weeks (mainly about my field, agriculture) and see it as proven: it is very hard, for me too, to leave a point of view and start a real transformation in your mind ,let alone in your doing.  But a few young start-ups are doing well and I hope very much they will succeed.

Heiner
Heiner, the old farmer.....
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