Australia: Ellen Brook Wetland Project Moves Ahead

Work is underway to build one of Western Australia’s largest constructed wetlands, the Ellen Brook Wetland project, to boost the health of the Swan River by improving water quality.

Announcing the start of construction this week, Environment Minister Albert Jacob said the project aimed to reduce phosphorus and nitrogen loads entering the river from the Ellen Brook catchment, a significant source of nutrients to the waterway.

“The Liberal National Government is committed to a range of programs to maintain and protect the health of the Swan and Canning rivers. Key to this is the construction of nutrient-stripping wetlands,” Mr Jacob said.

The result will be an improvement in water quality which will help reduce the likelihood of toxic algal blooms.

“It is estimated that the first stage of the wetland will remove 270kg of phosphorus and 330kg of nitrogen each year. Further stages of work will further increase the quantity of nutrients removed from the Ellen Brook before it flows into the Swan River.”

The State Government has committed $2.52million to the project, with $1.53million from the Federal Government.

This program will include the creation of a wetland basin on the site’s floodplain, about 800 square metres of bank stabilisation works and the installation of an access path and a pumping system.

Press Release, March 7, 2014

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