July 2010, Vol. 22, No.7

Out of Nose, Out of Mind

Multiple systems at new biological nutrient removal plant keep odors — as well as neighbor complaints — in check

feature 1 art Catalina Nadeau–Bonilla, Trevor Jones, Kim Fries, and Andy Dutton

Odor control was a major concern when building the award-winning, state-of-the-art Pine Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant. The new 100,000-m3/d biological nutrient removal plant, which serves the southern areas of Calgary, Alberta, is located in the Bow River Valley near new residential developments and a golf course — plus, the site has ultimate capacity to treat 700,000 m3/d. Therefore, the City of Calgary made commitments to the residents of surrounding areas to incorporate odor control within the plant and adopted stringent odor-emission standards.

Following a complete odor-emission characterization study, four different systems were designed for the plant: three biofilters and one caustic scrubber. After more than a year of operation, no odor complaints have been received.  Read full article  (login required)


Three for One

Maryland project meets multiple goals: park renewal, stream restoration, and stormwater management 

feature 2 art Timothy Schueler, Lise Soukup, and James Fetchu

Individual urban stream restoration (SR), stormwater management (SM), and community park renewal projects are challenging enough on their own. Taking on all three at the same time can be extremely difficult and often is not feasible because of limited space, high land value, or incompatible project goals. The rehabilitation of the College Gardens Park in Rockville, Md., is a rare example of successfully integrating multiple goals in one project.  Read full article  (login required)


Environmental Fate and Transport of Microconstituents

San Jose, Calif., takes a preliminary look at how well conventional wastewater treatment removes emerging contaminants

Feature 3 art Eric Dunlavey, David Tucker, and James Ervin

Recently, there has been significant media attention on the environmental fate, transport, and effects of a broad class of compounds referred to as “microconstituents” or “emerging contaminants.” These compounds include personal care products, pharmaceuticals, steroids, hormones, and trace organics, such as polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs). Much of the media focus has been on the presence of these compounds in drinking water. However, as a water utility, wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) receive a mass of some of these anthropogenic compounds. Amid increasing public concern, wastewater managers and professionals will need quantitative information to answer questions from the public and media regarding the magnitude of such loads and potential treatment efficiencies. Quantitative information also can be used to determine how best to focus future pollution prevention and source control actions.

Understanding what happens to emerging contaminants as they pass through or are broken down in WWTPs will help us understand how they may be treated in the future.  Read full article  (login required)


Operations Forum Features

Minor Changes, Major Improvements

A phased process controlled via changes in pH and oxidation–reduction potential vastly improves nutrient removal

Feature 4 art Amanda McInnis, Herb Bartle, Tom Adams, and Coralynn Revis

When Bozeman, Mont., received its new Montana Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit in 2008, the city found it had a new total nitrogen limit. Wastewater treatment plant effluent now had to contain less than 355 kg/d (782 lb/d) of total nitrogen, while the effluent ammonia limit was still 1.52 mg/L (30-day average) and 3.15 mg/L (daily maximum). So, plant staff had to figure out how to get the existing activated sludge system to cut effluent total nitrogen without sacrificing ammonia removal.  Read full article  (login required)


EMS Experiment

An operations perspective on environmental management systems

Feature 5 art Charles Beckett

In 2005, the Yonkers (N.Y.) Joint Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) became the first wastewater treatment plant in New York State to be certified to the ISO 14001 environmental management system (EMS) standard. Implementing the EMS provided the Yonkers plant with the opportunity to improve its operations and maintenance (O&M) systems and address several important organizational concerns. Along the way, the plant has developed best management practices that have provided benefits beyond those originally anticipated.  Read full article  (login required)


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