Lixnaw Integrated Constructed Wetlands
Sustainable and environmentally friendly wastewater treatment system in Lixnaw, Co. Kerry
Irish Water, working in partnership with Kerry County Council, is investing €2 million to construct an integrated constructed wetlands in Lixnaw, Co. Kerry. This innovative and environmentally friendly project was developed in close collaboration with IE Consulting Ltd and Vesi Environmental Ltd. This project is being delivered by Healy Rae Plant Hire Ltd on behalf of Irish Water, with works currently on-going.
What is an integrated construction wetland?
- An integrated construction wetland (ICW) is a sustainable, natural wastewater treatment system that is designed to look and function as a natural wetland. An ICW is an environmentally-friendly way to treat wastewater and will result in reduced operational and maintenance costs, biodiversity creation, while also reducing energy consumption and carbon emissions.
- Significantly reduce energy consumptions and carbon emissions associated with the traditional wastewater treatment process.
- Provide sufficient wastewater treatment to meet environmental requirements for existing and future populations.
- Reduce operational costs and maintenance in comparison to traditional wastewater treatment processes – less than 10% of a conventional WWTP.
- Create an environmentally friendly wastewater treatment process, which eliminates the need for chemicals to be added.
- Carbon sequestration - ICWs can sequester in excess of 5 tonnes of elemental carbon per hectare per annum - this is greater than a high-yield sitka spruce forestry.
- The carbon footprint will be negative over the lifespan of the ICW as the amount of carbon sequestered will be far greater than that used in the build.
- Enhance biodiversity for plants and animals at the site through habitat creation using native plants and trees.
- The vegetation used in the ICW cells is common wetland/emergent species that are native in Ireland and to Kerry. These include bulrushes, sedges and water grasses.
- Ensure compliance with Urban Wastewater Treatment Regulations 2001.
What is involved?
- Construction of two small settlement cells and four larger treatment cells planted with native wetland species on the 5.5 hectare site to the north of the village.
- Construction of pumping station and ancillary works.
- Provision an open public amenity area with walkways and information.
- Add biodiversity value to the area by providing habitat for local wildlife while remaining sensitive to the existing landscape.
- Construction has commenced and scheduled for completion in Q3 2020.
- This is followed by a 12-month commissioning period for system maturation and plant establishment.
For further information on wetlands visit our Wastewater Treatment In Wetlands page.