Waste Water Treatment
In some urban areas, sewage is carried separately in sanitary sewersand runoff
from streets is carried in storm drains. Access to either of theseis typically
through a manhole. During high precipitation periods asanitary sewer overflow can
occur, causing potential public health andecological damageSewage may drain
directly into major watersheds with minimal orno treatment. When untreated,
sewage can have serious impacts on thequality of an environment and on the health
of people. Pathogens cancause a variety of illnesses. Some chemicals pose risks
even at very lowconcentrations and can remain a threat for long periods of time
becauseof bioaccumulation in animal or human tissue.
Sewage treatment plants can have multiple effects on nutrient levelsin the water
that the treated sewage flows into. These effects on nutrientscan have large
effects on the biological life in the water in contact withthe effluent. Treatment
ponds can include any of the following:

Oxidation ponds, which are aerobic bodies of water usually 1-2 meters in depth
that receive effluent from sedimentationtanks or other forms of primary

Polishing ponds are similar to oxidation ponds but receiveeffluent from an
oxidation pond or from a plant with anextended mechanical treatment.

Raw sewage lagoons or sewage lagoons are aerobic pondswhere sewage is added
with no primary treatment other thancoarse screening.

Anaerobic lagoons are heavily loaded ponds.

Sludge lagoons are aerobic ponds, usually 2-5 meters indepth, which receive
anaerobically digested primary sludge,or activated secondary sludge under

particularly in summer andfall. low-quality effluents either did not contain ciliatedprotozoa or contained only a few species in small numbers.Phosphorous limitation is a possible result from sewage treatmentand results in flagellate-dominated plankton. which is a proxy for primaryproduction in marine environments. The effluentdominant species changes from Aeromonas caviae in winter to Aeromonas sobria in the spring and fall while the inflow dominantspecies is Aeromonas caviae . Due to these findings. High nutrient concentrationleads to high chlorophyll a concentrations. andphytoplankton) control of the bacterial population. greater change inseasonal cycles was found the furthest from the effluent. by itself. it seems unlikely that anyparticular component of the industrial effluent has. High primary production means highphytoplankton populations and most likely high zooplanktonpopulations because zooplankton feed on phytoplankton. cycle in comparison to that of fecal coli increasing distance from a wastewater source. high-quality effluents contained a wide variety of ciliated protozoain large numbers. . On the otherhand. any harmfuleffects on the protozoan populations of activated sludge plants. BASIC CIVIL & ENVIRONMENT ENGINEERINGSEMINAR REPORT 11 Waste Water Treatment At the same time a different study found high nutrientconcentrations linked to sewage effluents. This trend is sostrong that the furthest location studied actually had an inversion of the Aeromonas spp. Sincethere is a main pattern in the cycles that occurred simultaneously at allstations it indicates seasonal factors (temperature. In a study of Aeromonas spp.A study done in Britain found that the quality of effluent affectedthe plank tonic life in the water in direct contact with the wastewatereffluent. However.water.The plank tonic trend of high populations close to input of treatedsewage is contrasted by the bacterial trend. solar radiation.effluent released into marine systems also leads to greater populationinstability. Turbid. which is constant throughout the seasons.

Ozone Waste Water Treatment is alsogrowing in popularity.BASIC CIVIL & ENVIRONMENT ENGINEERINGSEMINAR REPORT 12 Waste Water Treatment WASTE WATER TREATMENT There are numerous processes that can be used to clean up wastewaters depending on the type and extent of contamination. Anaerobic processesare widely applied in the treatment of industrial wastewaters andbiological sludge. Mostwastewater is treated in industrialscale wastewater treatment plants(WWTPs) which may include physical. or d o m e s t i c w a s t e w a t e r t r e a t m e n t .Disposal of wastewaters from an industrial plant is a difficult andcostly problem. The most important aerobic treatment system is theactivated sludge process. chemical. Modernsystems include tertiary treatment by micro filtration or syntheticmembranes. whichdecontaminates the water as Ozone bubbles percolate through the tank. After membrane filtration. However. lakes or oceans.S. the treated wastewater isindistinguishable from waters of natural origin of drinking quality. is the processof removing contaminants from wastewater and household sewage. Other Industrial processesthat produce a lot of waste-waters such as paper and pulp production hascreated environmental concern leading to development of processes torecycle water use within plants before they have to be cleaned anddisposed of. For some waste waters ecological approaches using reedbed systems such as constructed wetlands may be appropriate. chemical and biological treatmentprocesses. and requires the use of an ozone generator. Most petroleum refineries. serving up to one quarter of the homes in the U. based on the maintenance and recirculation of acomplex biomass composed by micro-organisms able to absorb andadsorb the organic matter carried in the wastewater. It includes physical. andbiological . chemical and petrochemicalplants have onsite facilities to treat their wastewaters so that the pollutantconcentrations in the treated wastewater comply with the local and/ornational regulations regarding disposal of wastewaters into communitytreatment plants or into rivers. Some wastewater may be highly treated and reused asreclaimed water. forwhich a small amount of methanol is typically added to provide thebacteria with a source of carbon. S e w a g e t r e a t m e n t .Nitrates can be removed from wastewater by microbial gentrification. bothrunoff (effluents) and domestic. the use of septic tanks and other OnSite SewageFacilities (OSSF) is widespread in rural areas.

Its objective is to produce an environmentally-safe fluid .processes to remove physical. chemical and biologicalcontaminants.