|Stopping algae – before it starts
Communities across North America are struggling to contain the growing problem of algae blooms in surface waters. In the last two decades, this scourge has been expanding at an alarming and uncontrolled rate, impairing watersheds globally. When nutrients like phosphorus flow into the water ways (through urban and agricultural runoff, and seepage), in the dissolved form phosphorus functions as an accelerant, feeding algae blooms. Algal blooms not only significantly degrade water quality, deplete oxygen leading to fish kills, and drive aquatic ecosystem imbalance, but unsightly blooms have negative economic impacts. Several algal bloom species naturally create major health hazards through the release of harmful neurotoxins. Dissolved phosphorus can feed species like Blue-Green Algae (cyanobacteria) having adverse heath affects even leading to death of fish, pets, birds and livestock.
In an attempt to take back impaired water bodies, local governments have been experimenting with mechanical “harvesting,” water-level manipulation, biological controls, chemical treatments and even high-intensity ultrasound. Most practices and applications have been focused on remediating or masking the problem of existing algae blooms, while not addressing the root cause – dissolved phosphorus. Without implementing practices to manage and control continued phosphorus loads introduced into the water bodies, this issue can not be addressed.
But prevention and controlling phosphorus loadings is a critical path to solving this public health menace.
SorbtiveMEDIA captures and retains high levels of dissolved phosphorus in stormwater runoff before it can enter watersheds and feed the algae.
A clean-tech oxide-coated filtration media produced from natural aggregates, SorbtiveMEDIA traps and adsorbs both particulate-bound and dissolved phosphorus, with 65-90% removal rates. It offers a solution for achieving low Total Phosphorus effluent concentrations (< 0.1 mg/L), providing a cost-effective means to ensure water quality objectives are met, even in impaired watersheds with aggressive Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) targets.
Beat the Algae Blues
SorbtiveMEDIA is ideal for proactive and progressive watershed management initiatives to stop phosphorus at the source, and prevent continued impairment. It can be easily used to retrofit or enhance phosphorus treatment and capture dissolved phosphorus in proprietary and non-proprietary stormwater BMPs like sand filters, rain gardens, bioretention cells, infiltration trenches, permeable pavement and other filter systems by easily replacing or augmenting conventional media. It can also be used with SorbtiveFILTER, a turn-key stormwater filtration system, designed and tested demonstrating nearly 80% Total Phosphorus Removal, and over 40% Dissolved Phosphorus capture.
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