INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PHYTOREMEDIATION, vol.16, no.6, pp.537-553, 2014 (SCI-Expanded)
Constructed wetlands are of increasing interest worldwide given that they represent an eco-technological solution to many environmental problems such as wastewater treatment. Turkey possesses approximately 70% of the world's total boron (B) reserves, and B contamination occurs in both natural and cultivated sites throughout Turkey, particularly in the north-west of the country. This study analyzes B removal and plant uptake of B in pilot plots of subsurface horizontal-flow constructed wetlands. Constructed wetlands were vegetated with Typha latifolia (referred to as CW1) and Phragmites australis (referred to as CW2) to treat wastewater from a borax reserve in Turkey-the largest of its type in the world and were assessed under field conditions. The B concentrations of water inflows to the systems were determined to be 10.2, 28.2, 84.6, 232.3, 716.4, and 2019.1mg l(-1). The T. latifolia in the CW(1)treatment group absorbed a total of 1300mg kg(-1) B, whereas P. australis absorbed 839mg kg(-1). As a result, CW(1)had an average removal efficiency of 40.7%, while that of CW(2)was 27.2%. Our results suggest that constructed wetlands are an effective, economic and eco-friendly solution to treating B mine wastewater and controlling the adverse environmental effects of B mining.