Maleny Sewage Treatment Plant Wetland
Case study type
Unitywater Innovation Group
11 May 2018
The use of Diatomix in this wetland for wastewater effluent polishing and final treatment is intended to increase the dissolved oxygen and assist with the long-term health and stability of the wetland. The use of Diatomix is also expected to reduce the growth of filamentous algae and floating waterweeds like Azolla and Salvinia.
Funding amount for this project is provided on an annual basis.
Diatomix should reduce the nutrient profile of the water, which in turn has the benefit of outcompeting other algae and waterweeds so their growth is greatly limited. Consistent diatom algae growth will in turn provide a food source for the higher levels of the food chain. A key element of a healthy wetland system is biodiversity and the healthy food chain aids in this biodiversity.
Additional benefits of using Diatomix in wetlands are that the diatoms export nutrients into the animal biota. This is a great benefit because it means fewer of the nutrients are taken up by the wetland plants. This is beneficial over time, as once a wetland has fully established, its ability to take up more nutrients is reduced, and the wetland will be required to be reset, at a significant expense. Moving more nutrient into the animal biota means the timeframe before the wetland requires resetting is extended. The expectation is that the delay in resetting will be a number of years.
The other benefit of Diatomix use in a wetland is that diatoms are one of the fastest growing algae types known. The diatom growth will be able to reduce the nutrients quickly after a large rain event for example.
This project is still in the early stages of establishment, but to date has shown a reduced level of Azolla and filamentous algae. The nitrogen profile has changed and reduced.
Last updated: 14 September 2018
This page should be cited as:
Department of Environment and Science, Queensland (2018) Maleny Sewage Treatment Plant Wetland, WetlandInfo website, accessed 24 September 2020. Available at: https://wetlandinfo.des.qld.gov.au/wetlands/resources/tools/wetland-project/maleny-sewage-treatment-plant-wetland-31ab/