Coal Harbour and Quatsino First Nation now have a new wastewater treatment plant.
The Regional District of Mount Waddington held a ribbon cutting ceremony, attended by MLA Claire Trevena on Jul 20, to celebrate the completion of the project.
The new facility doubles the capacity of the existing plant and results in the lifting of a moratorium on growth in both communities, as the plant will now be able to process a greater volume of materials.
The plant uses a Dissolved Air Flotation (DAF) tank which separates suspended matter such as fats, oils, and soils by producing microbubbles that attract the matter and bring it to the surface where it forms a thick layer of sludge. A brush skims off the sludge off the surface of the water and deposits it into a separate tank. From there, the sludge is moved to the storage tank and the treated water gets sent out to the ocean.
The innovative sludge dewatering station also reduces the volume of residual waste from the treatment process by at least 90 per cent resulting in lower costs and energy savings.
“Projects such as the Coal Harbour Wastewater Treatment Plant offer very significant benefits to local residents by reducing the environmental impacts and costs associated with waste treatment,” said Trevena, who was representing Selena Robinson Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing.
“The province of B.C. has joined with the federal government to provide funding to undertake these project so that small rural communities also benefit from new infrastructure.”
The project received funding of $449,000 from the Clean Water Wastewater Fund, a joint federal-provincial program, and employed local contractors Paul Getman and Port Hardy Bulldozer, as well as AWC Water Solutions Ltd. from Surrey B.C
“This has been an interesting project in that a lot of the work -both the brain and the brawns – have been done by Paul Getman,” said Patrick Donaghy, RDMW Operations Manager. “AWC who are the consultants who worked with us were really excited to work with the regional district because very few local governments of our size have someone of Paul’s capacity.”
Donaghy explained that Getman was the lede in design work with AWC and was also responsible for putting everything together and “making it work”. He also designed and installed the electrical control system that operates the equipment.
“This is a technology can work with other wastewater treatment plants that are suffering similar challenges as we were to expand their capacity without needed a large area,” noted Donaghy.
“I’m really proud the size of the Regional District is quite small compared to the rest of the Province but we are able to carry a lot of initiatives forward,” said Andrew Hory, Electoral Area Director and Chairman of the Regional District. “We have a solar Zamboni, we have bio-cover at the landfill, and we have a sewage treatment plant that certainly outshines Victoria at the moment.”