The removal of arsenic by horizontal subsurface flow constructed wetlands

K. Lizama Allende, D. T. McCarthy, T. D. Fletcher

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference PaperResearchpeer-review


Constructed wetlands are a cost-effective, environmental-friendly treatment technology to remove As from water. In this study, lab-scale horizontal flow wetlands were used to verify the effectiveness of two media types, one being zeolite and the other a mix of limestone and cocopeat. Inflow water had [As] = 2.6 mg L-1, [Fe] = 97.3 mg L-1 and [B] = 30.8 mg L -1 at pH 2 ± 0.2. Both types were highly effective: zeolite removed 99.9% and 96.1% of As and Fe respectively, whereas the limestone/cocopeat wetlands removed 99.8% and 87.3%. Results confirmed the key role of the wetland media in fostering specific removal processes: As co-precipitation with Fe in limestone wetlands, and As and Fe removal by cation exchange capacity of zeolite. Limestone/cocopeat wetlands offer a more suitable treatment, given the neutral pH achieved, but zeolite wetlands were able to achieve lower concentrations of Fe, despite the acidic pH in the treated effluent.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOne Century of the Discovery of Arsenicosis in Latin America (1914-2014), As 2014
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 5th International Congress on Arsenic in the Environment, May 11-16, 2014, Buenos Aires, Argentina
EditorsM.I. Litter, H.B. Nicolli, J.M. Meichtry, N. Quici, J. Bundschuh, P. Bhattacharya, R. Naidu
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherCRC Press
Number of pages2
ISBN (Electronic)9781315778884
ISBN (Print)9781138001411
Publication statusPublished - 2014
EventInternational Congress on Arsenic in the Environment (As2014) - Buenos Aires, Argentina
Duration: 11 May 201416 May 2014
Conference number: 5th

Publication series

NameArsenic in the Environment. Proceedings
PublisherCRC Press, LLC
ISSN (Print)2154-6568


ConferenceInternational Congress on Arsenic in the Environment (As2014)
Abbreviated titleAs2014
CityBuenos Aires
OtherOn behalf of the organizing committee, we cordially invite you to join the 5th International Congress on Arsenic in the Environment (As2014), to be held in Buenos Aires, Argentina between 11-16 May 2014. The theme of As2014 is "One century of the discovery of arsenicosis in America (1913-2014)", to commemorate 100 years of the discovery of the effects of arsenic in human life in Latin America.
Internet address

Cite this