Testing Tile Drain Phosphorous Removal with a Novel Carboxymethylcellulose-iron Hydrogel Filtration Matrix
The objective of this research is to reduce the loss phosphate (P) used as fertilizer into waterways. Accumulation of phosphate in rivers and lakes leads to premature lake aging and high P-content allows growth and proliferation of algae, which degrade quality of drinking water, aquatic habitat, and recreational utilization of waterways.
The environmentally friendly compound carboxymethyl cellulose in combination with iron forms stable gel beads and when placed in water, bind and retain phosphate. This project aims to produce the beads on an industrial scale and field-test this novel P-filtration system at two farm tile drainage systems in the Lower Thames River near Chatham-Kent and Bruce Peninsula, in Southern Ontario.
Partners will benefit from a demonstration system for the low-cost and efficient P-removal. The wide range utilization of the P-binding matrix and the tile drain filtration systems will reduce P-load in waterways thus lowering the incidence of harmful algal blooms.