Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2012CO266B

Biowin Simulation to Assess Alternative Treatment Units for a Local Wastewater Treatment Plant to Meet the New Effluent Nutrient Regulations

Institute: Colorado
Year Established: 2012 Start Date: 2012-03-01 End Date: 2013-02-28
Total Federal Funds: $5,000 Total Non-Federal Funds: $2,400

Principal Investigators: Pinar Omur-Ozbek

Abstract: Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is updating Regulation 31 and creating Regulation 85(3) (to be passed around early 2012) to reduce the nutrient loadings to lakes and streams by wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) effluents. Of the four effluent nutrient tiers, Tier 2 is expected to be the basis for the existing publicly owned treatment works (POTWs) (>1.0 MGD) as the limits can be achieved with conventional biological nutrient removal (BNR) technology. For Tier 2, effluents should not contain total phosphorus and total inorganic nitrogen above 1 and 10 mg/L, respectively. City of Loveland WWTP is selected as the model system for this research. It has a 10 MGD capacity and a conventional step-feed activated sludge process which operates effectively to meet the current regulatory effluent requirements. When the Regulation 85 goes into effect, Loveland WWTP, as well as many other CO WWTPs, will be required to meet the new effluent limitations by the next permit round. Hence it is essential for the WWTPs to proactively look for alternative options to update their treatment systems to meet the new regulations.