Bio-remediation for Selenium Making it Work for Agriculture THE PROBLEM Selenium is being added to natural waterways in areas where agriculture provides return water after irrigation Selenium at the concentrations reported in certain waterways has been determined to be harmful to waterfowl, fish, and potentially to humans Federal authorities may assign irrigators some responsibility for reducing the selenium concentrations in the return water. Bio-accumulation Water Algae Insects
Fish Birds 1 10 100 1,000 10,000 The Regional Problem The total load of selenium entering the Colorado River from three reaches of the Umcompahgre and Gunnison Rivers creates concentrations that
have been determined to be environmentally toxic Agriculture may be required to share the responsibility for reducing the Se load Agriculture in the region depends upon irrigation and drainage Any solution for Se discharges from farms will need to be farm friendly and agriculturally compatible If agriculture is required to participate in reducing selenium, how should we develop a solution? Localize the problem Review the literature Consolidate the available information Develop a model remediation program that addresses the site-specific need AGRARIANS DESIGN PROCESS DATA REVIEW UNDERSTANDING THE PROBLEM
POLITICAL ECONOMIC ECOLOGICAL INITIAL CONCEPT THOUGHT EXPERIMENTS METHODS TECHNOLOGIES INFRASTRUCTURE DESIGN DEMONSTRATION PROJECT PROOF OF CONCEPT EMPIRICAL EVALUATION ACCEPT ELIMINATE MODIFY EXPAND SCIENTIFIC INQUIRY ON PROCESS RECOMMENDED ACTIONS
What the Science Says Selenium is a trace metal, and can be removed in a desalinization plant Se can change forms, and some forms are more soluble and/or more toxic than others Se can be taken up in some quantity by certain plants under certain conditions Selenium can be volatilized under certain conditions Certain biological processes produce insoluble forms of selenium, which are removed from the water. Insoluble forms of Se remain in sediment and are generally less bio-available Project Development for Selenium Removal in
Californias Central Valley: Broadview Water District Characteristics of the project: 10,000 acre irrigation and drainage district seleniferous soils in the west side of the San Joaquin Valley active network of open and tile drains regulatory pressure for reduction of selenium in discharged drain water project funding from federal (BOR) source, including in-kind cost sharing Agrarians Goals for Broadview Reduce the Se load leaving Broadview: current annual load target is 852 lbs. Focus on hot spots, i.e. the few sumps that produce most of the selenium Minimize impacts to wildlife by restricting access
to the project Minimize long-term costs Develop a project that is compatible with the agricultural setting Important Concepts Utilized Selenium volatilization can take place in wetland settings Selenium reduction can also take place if the environment is low in oxygen The volatilization and the reduction take place in the plant roots, probably via bacteria that live in the root environment Optimal bacterial action will take place if the bacteria are well fed AND in maximum contact with the selenium in the water A Flow-through Wetland
Water flows through the hay bale with the plants, contacting the root mass with the bacteria on them. Selenium transformation takes place in the roots. This is a true flow-through wetland. The water on our project must flow THROUGH the root mass on the plants in the straw bales Channel pattern for Se removal project Discharge T rea tm n T rea t2 tm n t3 t m rea T t1 en fet
3 5 ar g isch D em tr 7 6 tak e In 5 D arg e isch et r m 4 3 ak e etrIn m 2 F IG E1 R
U a2 em ch .S 8 tico fse0 len r d m iu n ctio u 1 m ak er etIn n n a ch jc ta ro elp ro a B WterD iew
v d is rict Intake There are 11 channels in a treatment, and they form a block that is a total of 3300 feet long. Water moves from the intake to the discharge, through the meanders, with a residency time of 21-50 days, depending on the season. Channels used in Broadview Project average water line 14 " 1 ~ 1.6 2.5 ' 3.5 ' 18 " 8.5 ' 15.5 ' Schematic in cross section of the dimensions of the channels used
in the selenium reduction project at Broadview Water District. Broadviews Selenium Treatment Facility Metering inflows to the system Change in Selenium in Control and in Treatment 3.5 3.5 3.0 3.0 2.5 2.5 2.0 2.0 1.5
1.5 1.0 1.0 0.5 0.5 0.0 0.0 Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec T3 Selenium Lbs. Cumulative
T1 Selenium Lbs. Cumulative T1 Selenium and T3 Selenium J an T1 Selenium Input T1 Selenium Discharge+P ool T1 Selenium Residual T3 Selenium Input T3 Selenium Discharge+P ool T3 Selenium Residual Discharge of Selenium in Control and in Treatment Ratio: (Discharge+Pool)/Input T1 Selenium and T3 Selenium Percent discharge
120% 100% 80% 60% 40% 20% 0% Date Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec J an T1 SeleniumRatio T3 SeleniumRatio Change in Se and NO3 Concentrations in the Project pH
0.216 0.0354 0.0441 SL 1 44.3 47.8 SL 6 2.6 <0.1 SL 7 <0.1 <0.1 SL 1 3240 3350 SL 6 SL 7 5300 10200 5560 11400 AGRARIANS DESIGN PROCESS DATA REVIEW UNDERSTANDING THE PROBLEM POLITICAL
ECONOMIC ECOLOGICAL INITIAL CONCEPT THOUGHT EXPERIMENTS METHODS TECHNOLOGIES INFRASTRUCTURE Wearehere DESIGN DEMONSTRATION PROJECT PROOF OF CONCEPT EMPIRICAL EVALUATION ACCEPT ELIMINATE MODIFY EXPAND SCIENTIFIC INQUIRY ON PROCESS
RECOMMENDED ACTIONS Stages: Model Prototype Pre-implementation Implementation The Design Spiral Effectiveness Risk Cost effectiveness Sustainability Technical feasibility Acceptability Efficiency Consensus STAGES of the Design Spiral MODEL
Small scale, inexpensive, testing basic concepts, highly adapative PROTOTYPE Larger scale, testing for efficiency and cost effectiveness, more process-oriented PRE-IMPLEMENTATION Approaches scale for a full project, involves optimization and risk analysis IMPLEMENTATION A full-scale project that meets all criteria for regional applicability Agrarian uses the design spiral as a tool for project development. Project Type Size (acres) Cost (dollars) Model Prototype Pre-implementation Implementation 3
10 40 100 50,000 500,000 1,000,000 3,000,000 Criteria evaluated feasibility, effectiveness, sustainability as above, and efficiency, cost as above, and acceptability, risk as above, and regional consensus for long-term implementation CRITERIA EVALUATED in the Design Spiral Effectiveness: Feasibility: Sustainability: Efficiency: Life cycle cost: Acceptability: Risk assessment: Consensus:
does it work? is it practical? will it last? does it work well ? is it affordable? is it reasonable? is it reliable and safe? can we all agree on it? Selenium removal in a farm setting: a model scale project Testing effectiveness, feasibility, and sustainability Agrarians Mission Statement To develop solutions to land and water management problems that will be: effective technologically feasible sustainable lowest in life cycle cost We believe that small, passionately interested teams with high capacity and creativity can solve problems with unique effectiveness. Such a team can:
internalize the design process move fast take calculated risks make our mistakes quickly maximize gains What it means for Agriculture Solving problems is a team approach. The players are: government agencies with vision, resources, and a sense of ownership in the problem farmers or irrigation districts with the capacity to explore options consultants with information and commitment to The Task Force is an important first step in building an effective team. Keep it FOCUSED ON TARGET ACTIVE CONTINUALLY EDUCATED INTERACTIVE REALISTIC and you are well on your way to developing
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