-Sam Pelts, “Meridel Rubenstein, Eden in Iraq: Water Extraction and Restoration”, EXTRACTION: Art on the Edge of the Abyss, Codex Foundation, Berkeley, California, January 2021, pp.512-513.

-Meridel Rubenstein, “Adam and Eve in the Southern Iraq Marshes,”, DARK MOUNTAIN, issue 17, Dark Mountain Project, UK,Spring 2020, pp.B4

-Melanie Chua, Recovering Eden, Making for Sustainable Community, BRACK, The Energy Issue no.4, essay with portfolio, March 2019.

-David M. Roth, Meridel Rubenstein@Brian Gross, Square, San Francisco, California, March 2019.

-Michael Abatemarco, “Absolute Power, Currents New Media 2018,” headline image from In The Marshes: Eden In Iraq installation, Pasatiempo, June 8, 2018, pg. 28.

-Meridel Rubenstein, “Genesis of Hope”, Trend Magazine, Santa Fe, New Mexico, June 2018, pp.49-59.

-Meridel Rubenstein, Eden Turned on its Side, University of New Mexico Museum and Press, Albuquerque, New Mexico, with essays by Dr. Shawn Michelle Smith and Alan Weisman, 80 plates, October 2017

-Davide Tocchetto and Meridel Rubenstein, Mesopotamia Secco A Secco,“ testo y foto, La Nuovo Ecologia, Anno XXXVI Numero 1,Gennaio 2016, pp. 62-64.

-“Eden in Iraq: Ecological and Cultural Restoration Through Art, Design ,and Environmental Science”, Creating A Sustainable World, Sustainable Earth Office, Nanyang Technological University,Singapore, 2016, ppgs188-89.

-Meridel Rubenstein, Catherine Harris, Stacey Neff, Mark Nelson, “Eden Again: A Wastewater Garden Project”, ISEA 2012 Albuquerque: Machine Wilderness, Radius Books 2012. p.82.

Rebecca Blythem “Return to Eden,” Elements Magazine, photo p.27, New Zealand, July 2011.

-Mark Nelson and Meridel Rubenstein, “Adam and Eve’s Sewage Problem”, Solutions for a sustainable and desirable future, Vol 5, Issue no.4, January 2015 pp 17- 22.

-Meridel Rubenstein, Catherine Harris, Stacey Neff, Mark Nelson,“Eden Again: A Wastewater Garden Project”, ISEA 2012 Albuquerque: Machine Wilderness, Radius Books 2012. p.82.

SCIENTIFIC PAPERS: about constructed wetlands and wastewater gardens systems by eden in iraq wwg project team members (in chronological order, 2021-1998)

-Nelson, M., Cattin, F., Tocchetto, D. and L. Hafouda, (in press, 2021), Constructed Wetlands in Hot and Arid regions: Wastewater Gardens systems in Yucatan, Mexico; northwest Australia; northern Algeria and southern Iraq, in: Stefanakis AI, Constructed Wetlands in Hot and Arid Regions, Springer publishers.

-Tocchetto D, Rubenstein M, Nelson, M, Al Asadi J (in press, 2021). Circular economy in the Mesopotamian Marshes: The Eden in Iraq Wastewater Garden Project. In: Stefanakis AI, Nikolaou I. (eds), Circular Economy and Sustainability:  Environmental Engineering, Policy, and Management, Vol. II. Elsevier Publishing, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

-Nelson, M., 2020. The challenge of managing water and nutrient cycles in a mini-world – the lessons from Biosphere 2, Global Water Forum

-Saggaï, M., Abdelkader, A., Nelson, M., Cattin, and Abdelhak. E. A., 2017. Long-term investigation of constructed wetland wastewater treatment and reuse: Selection of adapted plant species for metaremediation, Journal of Environmental Management (201): 1 October 2017, 120-128. 

-Tocchetto D, Rubenstein M, Nelson M, Sathikh P, Cattin F (2013) Marshes of Southern Iraq: New Eden in Iraq treatment wetlands project. Proceeding of International Conference 1-4 Sept. 2013, Society of Wetland Scientists European Chapter, Padova, Italy 

-Nelson, M., and Wolverton, B.C., 2011. Plants + Soil/Wetland Microbes and Food Crop Systems that also Clean Air and Water. Advances in Space Research (47) 4:582-590.

-De Stefani G., Tocchetto D., Salvato M. and Borin M., 2011. Performance of a floating treatment wetland for in-stream water amelioration in NE Italy. Hydrobiologia 674(1):157-167, October 2011

-Debabeche M, Lajo M, Tocchetto D, Abibsi N., Mimeche L., Borin M., Caravello G. (2010). Eaux usees epurees par phytoepuration pour l’irrigation des espaces verts urbains dans un climat aride. Proceedings of 5th International Conférence water resources in mediterranean basin “watmed5” May 26-28 2010, Lille, France.

-De Stefani G., Tocchetto D., Salvato M., Borin M., 2009. Applications of floating system for in stream water treatment, Proceeding of 4th Annual Meeting of the European Chapter of the Society of Wetlands Scientists (SWS), Erkner, Germany, p 140-141.

-Tredwell, R. and M. Nelson, 2009. Effective Approaches for Environmental & Wastewater Management and Training – The Birdwood Downs Case Studies in the Kimberley Region Of West Australia, published in: Sustainability of Indigenous Communities in Australia, eds. G. Ho, K. Mathew and M. Anda, pp. 207-220, Murdoch University, Murdoch, West Australia.

-Hafouda L,  Hadad M,   Arif Y,   Djafri K,   Balleche O,   Talab B, Debba M S, Nelson M, Cattin F, 2008. (L’épuration  des eaux usées domestiques par les plantes; une alternative a encouragé pour une préservation durable de l’environnement on zones arides; Cas de la station pilote du vieux Ksar de Temacine ; Touggourt).  Colloque international « Aridoculture ». Biskra, Algérie, le 13 et le 14 Décembre 2008

-Nelson, M. F. Cattin, M. Rajendran, R. Tredwell and L. Hafouda, Value-adding through creation of high diversity gardens and ecoscapes in subsurface flow constructed wetlands: Case studies in Algeria and Australia of constructed wetland systems. Paper presented at the 11th International Conference on Wetland Systems for Water Pollution Control, November 2008, Indore, India.;

-Nelson, M., R. Tredwell, A. Czech, G. Depuy, M. Suraja and F. Cattin,  Worldwide Applications of Wastewater Gardens and Ecoscaping: Decentralised Systems which Transform Sewage from Problem to Productive, Sustainable Resource, published in: Decentralised Water and Wastewater Systems : International Conference, Fremantle, Western Australia, 10-12 July 2006, pp. 63-73, edited by Kuruvilla Mathew, Stewart Dallas, Goen Ho, IWA Publications, London, 2008

-Tocchetto D., Simonetti G., Salvato M., Borin M., 2008. “In-stream floating vegetated systems to reduce effluent loads”: Proceedings of “8th International Wetlands Conference INTECOL” (Cuiabà Brasile 20-25 Luglio 2008) p. 32.

-Borin M., Tocchetto D. (2007). A constructed surface flow wetland for treating agricultural drainage waters. Water and nitrogen balance from 1998 to 2002. Science of the total Environment. Volume 380 1-3- Special issue: “Contaminants in Natural and Constructed Wetlands”.

-Nelson M., Cattin F., Tredwell R., Depuy G, Suraja M., Czech A., Why there are no better systems than Constructed Wetlands to treat sewage water – Advantages, Issues and Challenges, II International Congress SmallWAT07, Center of  New Water Technologies (CENTA), Ministry of Environment, on « Sewage water treatment in small communities », November 2007, Sevilla, Spain.

-Tocchetto D., Borin M. (2007). Floating vegetated systems to reduce the effluent loads in aquaculture farms. Performance and system evolution. Proceeding of International conference on Multi Functions of Wetland Systems, Legnaro (PD), Italy, 26-29 June 2007.

-Tocchetto D (2007) Treatment of Wastewater with Natural Systems and Reuse of Clean Water for Different Applications in the Caribbean Islands. Proceedings of CWWA2007 Conference 1-5 Oct 2007, Caribbean Wastewater Association Conference 2007, St. Kitts, West Indies

-Borin M., Tocchetto D., (2006). Observations on ornamental macrophytes for their potential use in subsurface flow wetland systems. Proceeding of IWA INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE, LISBON 2006

-Nelson, M., Odum, H.T., Brown, M.T., and A. Alling, “Living off the land”: resource efficiency of wetland wastewater treatment, invited paper presented at COSPAR conference, Warsaw, Poland, July, 2000, Advances in Space Research vol 27(9): 1546-1556,  2001.

-Nelson, M., Finn, M, Wilson, C., Zabel, B., van Thillo, M., Hawes, P., and R. Fernandez, 1999. Bioregenerative recycle of wastewater in Biosphere 2 using a created wetland: two year results, Ecological Engineering 13: 189-197.

-Nelson, M., 1998. Limestone mesocosm for recycling saline wastewater in coastal Yucatan, Mexico, Ph.D. dissertation, Dept. of Environmental Engineering Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, pp. 329.

-Nelson, M., 1998. Wetland systems for bioregenerative reclamation of wastewater — from closed systems to developing countries, Life Support and Biosphere Science, 5(3): 357-369.


-Abram, David, The Spell of the Sensuous: Perception and Language in a More-than-Human World (1996),New York: Books.

-Albright, W.F. (1922). The Location of the Garden of Eden. The American Journal of Semitic Languages and Literatures. 39 (1); 15-31.

-Ansari, N. (2012). Islamic Gardens. Thesis for Master of Landscape Architecture. CEPT University, Ahmedabad, India.

-Abdulamir Hamdani , “Protecting and Recording our Archaeological Heritage in Southern Iraq,” Near Eastern Archaeology, Vol. 71, No. 4 (December 2008), pp. 221-230.

-Jonathan Blair and Sheila Bloom, Islam,(2002) Yale University Press

-Morris Jastrow, Jr ,  “Sumerian Myths of Beginnings,” The American Journal of Semitic Languages and Literatures, Vol. 33, No. 2 (Jan.1917), pp. 91-144.

-Maxwell, Gavin (1957), A Reed Shaken by the Wind: Travels among the Marsh Arabs of Iraq, London .

-McKenzie, Donald A., (1915),Myths of Babylonia and Assyria, London: Gresham Publishing Co.

-Lytton John Musselman(2007), Figs, Dates, Laurel and Myrrh-Plants of the Bible and Quran Timber Press, Oregon.

-Ochsenschlager, E., (2004), Iraq’s Marsh Arabs in the Garden of Eden, University of Pennsylvania Museum Publications.

-Potts, Daniel, (1997)Mesopotamian Civilization: The material foundations, Ithaca, Cornell University Press

-Pournelle, Dr. Jennifer , Marshland of Cities: Deltaic Landscapes and the Evolution of Early Mesopotamian Civilization ,, December 2003, PhD thesis, University of Southern California.

-Pritchard, James B. The Ancient Near East,(2011) Princeton University Press.

-Richardson, C.J., and Hussain, N.A. (2006). Restoring the Garden of Eden: An Ecological Assessment of the Marshes of Iraq. BioScience, 56(6); 477-489.

-Curtis J. Richardson, Peter Reiss, Najah A. Hussain, Azzam J. Alwash, Douglas J. Pool “The Restoration Potential of the Mesopotamian Marshes of Iraq,” Science, New Series, Vol. 307, No. 5713 (Feb. 25, 2005), pp. 1307-1311

-Saleem, S.M.,(1962),Marshes dwellers of the Euphrates delta (an anthropological study of Chibayish village), University of London press, London .

-Thesiger , Wilfred (1964), The Marsh Arabs, Longman, London .

-van der Leeuw, Sander, The Archaeology of Innovation, The Long Now Foundation’s Seminars about Long-Term Thinking, w010 San Simeon Films

-Wilkinson,T.J., Archaeological Landscapes of the Near East,(2003),University of Arizona Press

-Diane Wolkstein , and Samuel Kramer (1983),Inanna Queen of Heaven and Earth: Her Stories and Hymns for Sumer Harper and Row,NY

Young, Gavin (1977), Return to the marshes: Life with Marsh Arabs of Iraq , Collins, London

Drs. Jenny Pournelle, Seth Richardson, Jane Moody, Abdulamir Hamdani, and Dan Lawrence are Mesopotamian archaeologists whose work Meridel Rubenstein has drawn upon as well .They, as well as Dr. van der Leeuw, offer an archeological understanding of environment, cultural preservation and sustainability. This project weds Nature and Culture from both a Humanistic as well as Ecological perspective. Ecological Philosopher Dr. David Abram has been a great influence as well. These are scholars with whom I correspond and who support the project thus far.


February 2019
Eden in Iraq, Brian Gross Fine Art, San Francisco, CA

October 2019
Eden Turned on its Side, Peters Projects Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico

Feb-June 2018
Eden Turned on its Side, University of New Mexico Fine Arts Museum, Albuquerque, NM, with release of monograph Eden Turned on Its Side

October 2017
Eden in Iraq, the National Design Centre, Singapore. Featuring display and documentation of our 4-year process to design and implement a wastewater garden in the southern Iraq marshes as an environmental public art and cultural heritage site. Featuring drawings, models, photographs, art and video installation, textual narratives, textiles with Eden in Iraq Design Team