Drainage systems have been traditionally designed in urban and industrial areas to maximise the flow of water from surfaces into waterways. This can be efficient but can lead to significant problems with water quality and flooding events when very high rainfall occurs. Stormwater may contain a large amount of suspended sediment as well as organic contaminants and heavy metals – which can be detrimental to both human health and the environment.
A recent article published on the International Biochar Initiative’s website shows an innovative new storm-water treatment system, utilising biochar as a filtration media. The large system has been installed at the Port of Tacoma in Washington State, USA. Biochar can act as a cheaper alternative to activated carbon and a suitable substrate for removing fine particulates as well as organic contaminants and heavy metals from the water stream.
Take a look at the article here:
Photo: A diagram of the system (courtesy of Kennedy/Jenks Consultants)