An area around the size of three Olympic swimming pools, made up of interconnected ponds and planted with more than 20,000 wetland plants, will be constructed at its Clifton wastewater treatment works, near Doncaster.
The company said the scheme will work alongside the treatment works to naturally filter phosphorus, a pollutant from sewage that can reduce water quality and harm nature, from millions of litres of treated water.
It will provide a natural, sustainable and low-carbon way to further improve the quality of water being released into the environment, Yorkshire Water said.
And it is hoped the wetland – due to be completed in autumn 2021 – will attract wildlife including bees and other pollinators, breeding birds, amphibians and reptiles.
Michael Housby, lead project manager at Yorkshire Water, said: “This project is the first of its kind in Yorkshire and will provide a range of benefits at our Clifton treatment works, not only for the way we treat wastewater, but also for the local environment.
“The new wetland will reduce the reliance of energy-heavy treatment processes and provide a sustainable way to remove phosphorus while creating wildlife diversity and achieving a biodiversity net gain.”
He added: “As part of the project we will be looking to engage with the local community and plan to offer opportunities for local groups and schools to come to the treatment works to help plant some of the 20,000 plants that will carry this natural treatment.”