Soft Touch
Project: The Softest Power
Kandahar, Afghanistan
Constructed wetlands have been used successfully to treat a variety of wastewaters including urban runoff, municipal, industrial and agricultural discharge. These shallow ponds are planted with vegetation which acts to support water treatment though microbial, biological, physical, and chemical processes. Operation Soft Touch deploys a wastewater treatment wetland to clean and treat the discharge from the Kandahar International Airport.
Standard use sandbags are here deployed to form a set of dike walls, establishing a series of biological wastewater treatment ponds. The organization of dike walls controls water retention time and exposure to plant root systems. Discharge from the airfield is progressively cleaned as it moves though the landscape system. The sandbags can be either pliable if filled with sand or hardened if filled with concrete, depending on the permanence of the system and the level of control over water movement.