Article courtesy of Anthony Watt | January 6th, 2017 | Dispatch-Argus | Shared as educational material.
A bioreactor, a pit with untreated and unpreserved wood chips, reduces agricultural nitrates in the water. Human activity like agriculture can cause an overdose, known as nutrient pollution, of substances including nitrates which cause algae populations to increase. People can position bioreactors at the edge of a farm field to reduce pollution. Bacteria in the wood chips scrub nitrates out of the water as the bacteria breathe. While researchers are working on some potential drawbacks, like chemical reactions that produce toxic methyl mercury, monitoring can counteract such problems. The installation of a bioreactor on Duck Creek is planned this summer. Read more here.