Blue Frogs at Stratford Wastewater Treatment Plant

At the monthly Town of Stratford council meeting on the evening of March 12th, a resolution was passed to approve the installation of the Blue Frog System to the Stratford Wastewater Treatment plant.

“Originally constructed in 1980, the lagoon system was built for a population of 1,750 people. To account for the rapid growth within Stratford, a number of carefully considered upgrades have been performed over the past 15 years. Unfortunately we are not getting the desired performance from the plant,” said Stratford Mayor David Dunphy. “The Blue Frog system promises to improve performance to a level that ensures the Town can continue to grow and demonstrates our commitment to respecting the natural environment while we continue to work towards a long term solution.”

Although the Town of Stratford has been actively managing the operations of the plant and has performed many recommended upgrades over the years, there continues to be ongoing operational issues. The operational issues include the undesirable odors in the spring each year and the failure to consistently meet effluent quality measures set by the Federal and Provincial Governments.

With continued underperformance of the plant, the spring-time odour issues and the longer than anticipated timeline for the implementation of a long term solution; it became apparent that these issues must be addressed immediately.   The Town commissioned an “operational review” of the system in the summer of 2013 to determine what measures could be taken to improve effluent quality and eliminate odours while meeting Stratford’s increasing needs due to continued growth.   The consultant’s September 2013 report titled Wastewater Treatment System Assessment made a number of recommendations for improvements to the operation of the plant to improve effluent quality and increase capacity until a more permanent solution is implemented.

All of the operational improvement recommendations from this report have been completed including a sludge removal program in the fall of 2013.  In addition, the consultant recommended several new technologies for consideration to ensure the effluent quality and odor issues are resolved until a long term solution can be implemented.  The Blue Frog system was the consultant’s preferred technology option for working with the existing plant infrastructure.

The Blue Frog System is a combination of water circulators and continuously stirred tank reactors that optimize and promote growth for the large number of microbes within the system.  The microbes in the system digest the organic sludge and begin pond revitalization.   It is an efficient and adaptable wastewater treatment process that will meet the required effluent quality and virtually eliminate odours and drastically reduces the requirement to de-sludge the lagoons on an ongoing basis

The Blue Frog System is an innovative solution that offers an alternative to the traditional aerated lagoon system.  It is a proven, tested, affordable solution designed to meet the needs of diverse applications, including municipal wastewater and is specially designed to offer the following benefits:

  • Digests sludge in situ;
  • Lowers Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD), Total Suspended Solids, Ammonia, and Pathogens;
  • Reduces and eliminates odours;
  • Meets regulatory discharge limits;
  • Reduces energy costs;
  • Minimal operating and maintenance;

“Town of Stratford staff have worked diligently to deal with the challenges of Stratford’s Wastewater Treatment plant,” said Emile Gallant, chair of the Stratford Infrastructure Committee. “We are confident that all possible solutions have been assessed and the most environmental and financially responsible solution has been selected.”

In consultation with the Provincial Department of Environment, Labour and Justice, it was determined that the Blue Frog System or similar upgrade would be required to ensure that the effluent quality requirements are met and the continued growth of the town is not hampered. Council has therefore decided to proceed with the installation of the Blue Frog System at the plant immediately. The design capacity of the upgrade is 4000 m3 per day while the current flow to our plant is 2700 m3 per day. The life of the upgrade will depend on the Town of Stratford’s growth and the performance of the new technology, but we expect it will provide at least five to ten years of acceptable service.  This will allow more time to develop a longer term solution.

The cost of the Blue Frog System, including upgrades to the front end of the plant to remove debris, ­­­is $1.5 million dollars, 2/3 of which will be funded from the Federal “New Deal for Cities and Communities” funding that we received over the past several years.

For more information about the Stratford Wastewater Treatment Plant please contact
Jeremy Crosby, Manager of Infrastructure
Phone: 902.569.6923
Email: jcrosby@townofstratford.ca

A copy of the consultant’s report, Wastewater Treatment System Assessment, can be found below.

Background Information – Upgrade to Stratford’s Wastewater Treatment Plant

In the past 15 years, more than one million dollars was spent to improve the current lagoon system. Actions taken to improve the effluent quality/capacity since 1997 include:

  • additional aeration
  • addition of influent flow monitoring (a flume) and a UV light system (for effluent disinfection)
  • additional rotating biological contactor
  • curtain walls to prevent short circuiting in the cells
  • sludge removal programs
  • outlet pipe alteration
  • enhanced maintenance programs including UV light cleaning and the addition of natural biological additives

With these enhancements the plant was expected to be adequate for the Town’s population and growth rate. In 2008 it became apparent that the plant would not be able to meet the Town’s long term requirements due to the fact that it was still not consistently meeting effluent quality requirements and had occasional odour and operational issues. Despite the effort and investment, we concluded that the development of a long term solution was required and a consultant was hired to identify solutions.

In the 2009 Assessment of Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrade report by ADI Limited, four recommendations were presented:

  • upgrade existing lagoon system at a cost of $5.6 million
  • build a new activated sludge plant costing $10.2 million
  • build a new Membrane Bioreactor (MBR) plant at an estimated cost of $10.8 million
  • pump wastewater to the Charlottetown plant based on the existing bulk metered rate which would make it the most expensive lifecycle cost option

Each option was considered and two were chosen for further consideration. The option of upgrading the lagoon was not desirable due to our experience with the current lagoon system, the requirement to significantly increase the footprint of the plant, the visual impact of the lagoon and because of the lagoon’s proximity to a planned high quality commercial area on the waterfront.

Council decided to further explore the option of pumping the wastewater to Charlottetown, on the premise that the two parties would share in the cost of the plant proportional to our respective flows, which would also give a fair comparison to building a new MBR plant in Stratford. The Town of Stratford hired Charlottetown’s city treatment plant designer and city auditor to review the impact of accepting Stratford’s wastewater. The consultants determined that Charlottetown’s plant would need to be upgraded to accommodate Stratford’s wastewater. A number of other points were also raised:

  • The capacity of the Hillsborough Bridge to carry the forcemain is not known, we are currently awaiting the consultant’s report for this information
  • The option will save both parties in terms of operating costs due to the economy of scale
  • The capital cost is similar to building a MBR plant in Stratford

In comparison to building a MBR plant in Stratford it was determined that both options require significant infrastructure funding and would have significantly higher annual costs over the current lagoon system, however the Charlottetown plant option has lower lifecycle costs due to operating cost efficiencies.   In addition, the existing treatment site would no longer be required, freeing up valuable waterfront land for public use and improving the entrance to the town which are high priorities for the Town of Stratford.

The possibility of pumping wastewater to Charlottetown is still a few years away because negotiations have to be completed with the city, the capacity of the Hillsborough Bridge to carry the forcemain has to be determined and infrastructure funding has to be secured. In addition, we would need time to design, gain environmental approval and construct upgrades to the City’s plant, the forcemain and pumping station.

 

Blue Frogs at Stratford Wastewater Treatment Plant

At the monthly Town of Stratford council meeting on the evening of March 12th, a resolution was passed to approve the installation of the Blue Frog System to the Stratford Wastewater Treatment plant.

“Originally constructed in 1980, the lagoon system was built for a population of 1,750 people. To account for the rapid growth within Stratford, a number of carefully considered upgrades have been performed over the past 15 years. Unfortunately we are not getting the desired performance from the plant,” said Stratford Mayor David Dunphy. “The Blue Frog system promises to improve performance to a level that ensures the Town can continue to grow and demonstrates our commitment to respecting the natural environment while we continue to work towards a long term solution.”

Although the Town of Stratford has been actively managing the operations of the plant and has performed many recommended upgrades over the years, there continues to be ongoing operational issues. The operational issues include the undesirable odors in the spring each year and the failure to consistently meet effluent quality measures set by the Federal and Provincial Governments.

With continued underperformance of the plant, the spring-time odour issues and the longer than anticipated timeline for the implementation of a long term solution; it became apparent that these issues must be addressed immediately.   The Town commissioned an “operational review” of the system in the summer of 2013 to determine what measures could be taken to improve effluent quality and eliminate odours while meeting Stratford’s increasing needs due to continued growth.   The consultant’s September 2013 report titled Wastewater Treatment System Assessment made a number of recommendations for improvements to the operation of the plant to improve effluent quality and increase capacity until a more permanent solution is implemented.

All of the operational improvement recommendations from this report have been completed including a sludge removal program in the fall of 2013.  In addition, the consultant recommended several new technologies for consideration to ensure the effluent quality and odor issues are resolved until a long term solution can be implemented.  The Blue Frog system was the consultant’s preferred technology option for working with the existing plant infrastructure.

The Blue Frog System is a combination of water circulators and continuously stirred tank reactors that optimize and promote growth for the large number of microbes within the system.  The microbes in the system digest the organic sludge and begin pond revitalization.   It is an efficient and adaptable wastewater treatment process that will meet the required effluent quality and virtually eliminate odours and drastically reduces the requirement to de-sludge the lagoons on an ongoing basis

The Blue Frog System is an innovative solution that offers an alternative to the traditional aerated lagoon system.  It is a proven, tested, affordable solution designed to meet the needs of diverse applications, including municipal wastewater and is specially designed to offer the following benefits:

  • Digests sludge in situ;
  • Lowers Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD), Total Suspended Solids, Ammonia, and Pathogens;
  • Reduces and eliminates odours;
  • Meets regulatory discharge limits;
  • Reduces energy costs;
  • Minimal operating and maintenance;

“Town of Stratford staff have worked diligently to deal with the challenges of Stratford’s Wastewater Treatment plant,” said Emile Gallant, chair of the Stratford Infrastructure Committee. “We are confident that all possible solutions have been assessed and the most environmental and financially responsible solution has been selected.”

In consultation with the Provincial Department of Environment, Labour and Justice, it was determined that the Blue Frog System or similar upgrade would be required to ensure that the effluent quality requirements are met and the continued growth of the town is not hampered. Council has therefore decided to proceed with the installation of the Blue Frog System at the plant immediately. The design capacity of the upgrade is 4000 m3 per day while the current flow to our plant is 2700 m3 per day. The life of the upgrade will depend on the Town of Stratford’s growth and the performance of the new technology, but we expect it will provide at least five to ten years of acceptable service.  This will allow more time to develop a longer term solution.

The cost of the Blue Frog System, including upgrades to the front end of the plant to remove debris, ­­­is $1.5 million dollars, 2/3 of which will be funded from the Federal “New Deal for Cities and Communities” funding that we received over the past several years.

For more information about the Stratford Wastewater Treatment Plant please contact
Jeremy Crosby, Manager of Infrastructure
Phone: 902.569.6923
Email: jcrosby@townofstratford.ca

A copy of the consultant’s report, Wastewater Treatment System Assessment, can be found below.

Background Information – Upgrade to Stratford’s Wastewater Treatment Plant

In the past 15 years, more than one million dollars was spent to improve the current lagoon system. Actions taken to improve the effluent quality/capacity since 1997 include:

  • additional aeration
  • addition of influent flow monitoring (a flume) and a UV light system (for effluent disinfection)
  • additional rotating biological contactor
  • curtain walls to prevent short circuiting in the cells
  • sludge removal programs
  • outlet pipe alteration
  • enhanced maintenance programs including UV light cleaning and the addition of natural biological additives

With these enhancements the plant was expected to be adequate for the Town’s population and growth rate. In 2008 it became apparent that the plant would not be able to meet the Town’s long term requirements due to the fact that it was still not consistently meeting effluent quality requirements and had occasional odour and operational issues. Despite the effort and investment, we concluded that the development of a long term solution was required and a consultant was hired to identify solutions.

In the 2009 Assessment of Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrade report by ADI Limited, four recommendations were presented:

  • upgrade existing lagoon system at a cost of $5.6 million
  • build a new activated sludge plant costing $10.2 million
  • build a new Membrane Bioreactor (MBR) plant at an estimated cost of $10.8 million
  • pump wastewater to the Charlottetown plant based on the existing bulk metered rate which would make it the most expensive lifecycle cost option

Each option was considered and two were chosen for further consideration. The option of upgrading the lagoon was not desirable due to our experience with the current lagoon system, the requirement to significantly increase the footprint of the plant, the visual impact of the lagoon and because of the lagoon’s proximity to a planned high quality commercial area on the waterfront.

Council decided to further explore the option of pumping the wastewater to Charlottetown, on the premise that the two parties would share in the cost of the plant proportional to our respective flows, which would also give a fair comparison to building a new MBR plant in Stratford. The Town of Stratford hired Charlottetown’s city treatment plant designer and city auditor to review the impact of accepting Stratford’s wastewater. The consultants determined that Charlottetown’s plant would need to be upgraded to accommodate Stratford’s wastewater. A number of other points were also raised:

  • The capacity of the Hillsborough Bridge to carry the forcemain is not known, we are currently awaiting the consultant’s report for this information
  • The option will save both parties in terms of operating costs due to the economy of scale
  • The capital cost is similar to building a MBR plant in Stratford

In comparison to building a MBR plant in Stratford it was determined that both options require significant infrastructure funding and would have significantly higher annual costs over the current lagoon system, however the Charlottetown plant option has lower lifecycle costs due to operating cost efficiencies.   In addition, the existing treatment site would no longer be required, freeing up valuable waterfront land for public use and improving the entrance to the town which are high priorities for the Town of Stratford.

The possibility of pumping wastewater to Charlottetown is still a few years away because negotiations have to be completed with the city, the capacity of the Hillsborough Bridge to carry the forcemain has to be determined and infrastructure funding has to be secured. In addition, we would need time to design, gain environmental approval and construct upgrades to the City’s plant, the forcemain and pumping station.

 

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