Ecological wetland paradigm drives water source improvement in the stream network of Yangtze River Delta

Chengqing Yin , Weidong Wang , Ting Yang , Weibing Guan , Weixi Peng , Ping Wu , Bin Zhong , Chundong Zhou , Qinghua Chen , Rongbin Zhang , Kewen Xu


Received March 09, 2021,Revised , Accepted March 10, 2021, Available online March 27, 2021

Volume 33,2021,Pages 55-72

Jiaxing created a precedent using bypass riparian marshes to purify micro-polluted water sources in China. Pond-wetland complex with constructed root channel technology becomes a paradigm which can be analogized as “human-body wetland model” based on bionics or biomimetics. Heterogeneous plant-bed/ditch system with highly active land/water ecotone interfaces, especially meandering boundaries, breeds many biochemical reactions “living areas”. Optimization of hydraulic regulation promotes redox environment alternations and wetland treatment efficiency. Here we reported a series of upgrades and performances in Guanjinggang wetland after the Shijiuyang prototype. Morphological reform of plant-bed/ditch system played a vital role. Spatially root channel zone was main force of wetland purification, and temporally the treatment effect was higher in low-temperature seasons indicating non-temperature dependent mechanisms worked. Water pollution comprehensive index improved steadily from IV to III, and comprehensive pollution load was reduced by ca. 40%–60%. Comprehensive evaluation function value further showed the gradients purification effect of the upgraded wetland. Ecological wetlands ameliorated source water quality, and reduced drinking water treatment reagents, thereby bringing about economic benefits. Through wetlands operation, people can see how the micro-polluted surface water becomes clear and clean, so promoting a significant social benefit. As a viable component of urban green space, wetlands could beautify regional eco-environment, freshen the air, increase urban ecological taste, and enhance the eco-environmental protection publicity. Thus, the multifunctional service values and indirect benefits are substantial. Jiaxing ecological wetlands provide a typical paradigm for water pollution remediation in developing countries and plays a leading role in technology engineering radiation effect.

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