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Improvement of wastewater treatment in Latin America and the Caribbean

A comprehensive study by a team of wastewater scientists from Aarhus University including AIAS fellow Dennis Konnerup shows that constructed wetlands could be a suitable solution to improve wastewater issues in the region.

2020.07.08 | Lena Bering

Photo: Constructed wetland planted with Cyperus papyrus in León, Mexico. The system treats domestic wastewater from 120 people. Photo: Marco A. Rodriguez-Dominguez.

Most of the wastewater in Latin America is discharged to nature without any treatment and with an increasing population, there is an immediate need of a sustainable solution. The discharge of untreated wastewater from households and industries is a threat to nature and humans and causes eutrophication of surface waters and transmission of waterborne diseases.

The advantages of a nature-based solution as constructed wetlands are the utilization of natural processes, a high process stability and cost-effectiveness.

The review just published this week entitled ”Constructed wetlands in Latin America and the Caribbean: A review of experiences during the last decade” shows that this technology is only used to a very limited extent in the region today, so there is a great potential for further implementation and advancement of the technology. Furthermore, the warm and tropical climate in large parts of the region ensures that the wetlands have a high, constant treatment capacity.

For more details, read the full scientific article here

‘Constructed wetlands in Latin America and the Caribbean: A review of experiences during the last decade’ by Marco A. Rodriguez-Dominguez, Dennis Konnerup, Hans Brix, Carlos A. Arias in: Water, Vol 12(6):


Dennis Konnerup, Assistant Professor, AIAS-COFUND Fellow
Email: dennis.konnerup@aias.au.dk

Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies (AIAS)
Høegh-Guldbergs Gade 6B 
DK-8000 Aarhus C

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Tags: Constructed wetlands, wastewater treatment, water