The fate of volatile organic compounds was evaluated in a wastewater-dependent constructed wetland near Phoenix, AZ, using field measurements and solute transport modeling. Numerically based volatilization rates were determined using inverse modeling techniques and hydraulic parameters established by sodium bromide tracer experiments. Theoretical volatilization rates were calculated from the two-film method incorporating physicochemical properties and environmental conditions. Additional analyses were conducted using graphically determined volatilization rates based on field measurements. Transport (with first-order removal) simulations were performed using a range of volatilization rates and were evaluated with respect to field concentrations. The inverse and two-film reactive transport simulations demonstrated excellent agreement with measured concentrations for 1,4-dichlorobenzene, tetrachloroethene, dichloromethane, and trichloromethane and fair agreement for dibromochloromethane, bromo-dichloromethane, and toluene. Wetland removal efficiencies from inlet to outlet ranged from 63% to 87% for target compounds.
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Fate of Volatile Organic Compounds in Constructed Wastewater Treatment Wetlands