NI Water use willow trees for 'environmentally acceptable' filtration

NI Water is to trial the use of willows as a natural vegetative filter to clean wastewater from its site in Dungannon.

John Gilliland, Resourceful Organics Ltd (left) and Bill Gowdy, NI Water's director of engineering procurement sign the agreement to trial the new willows technology

John Gilliland, Resourceful Organics Ltd (left) and Bill Gowdy, NI Water's director of engineering procurement sign the agreement to trial the new willows technology

The company hopes this technology will provide it with a solution for the cleaning and treatment of wastewater in other rural areas, while reducing its carbon footprint and capital expenditure. 


NI Water will partner with Resourceful Organics, in a commercial project, which is the first of its kind in Northern Ireland.

Using willows as a natural filter, the scheme will test the biofiltration system to clean wastewater from Drumkee Wastewater Treatment Works.

The proposal involves recycling the effluent or wastewater produced from the works, which will then be used to irrigate willow growing on neighbouring land.

The willows provide a natural filter system, and will be used to clean wastewater, which will then be filtered through the willows and cleansed of impurities. According to NI Water the willows also provide diverse habitats for a wide range of wildlife.

NI Water director of engineering procurement Bill Gowdy said: "This is a great first step in trialling an innovative environmental wastewater solution for Northern Ireland and we look forward to monitoring the progress of this new natural form of wastewater treatment."

According to John Gilliland, of Resourceful Organics, willows are one of the easiest plants to grow in the UK's climate and have the ability to absorb a substantial amount of nutrient, either as a liquid or sludge.

"As regulations for the disposal of wastewater and sludge become stricter, environmentally acceptable options must continue to be found for dealing with these wastes." he explained.

Conor McGlone


Tags

| Ireland | wastewater treatment

Topics

Water
Click a keyword to see more stories on that topic, view related news, or find more related items.

Comments

You need to be logged in to make a comment. Don't have an account? Set one up right now in seconds!


© Faversham House Ltd 2013. edie news articles may be copied or forwarded for individual use only. No other reproduction or distribution is permitted without prior written consent.