Dayton plans to spend nearly $8 million to try to reduce the amount of phosphorus in its wastewater discharge.
Dayton, Ohio will spend approximately $8 million to try to reduce the amount of phosphorus in its wastewater discharge
These measures are being taken to comply with state regulations and to avoid potential legal action.
According to the Ohio EPA, phosphorus from the city’s wastewater treatment plant is a contributor to nutrient pollution in the lower Great Miami River. The city is upgrading its treatment facilities to comply with new phosphorus limits by a 2022 deadline as a result, reported Dayton Daily News.
“Phosphorus and other nutrients contribute to poor water quality issues, including harmful algal bloom,” said Dina Pierce, a spokesperson with the Ohio EPA.
In September, the Dayton city commission approved a resolution authorizing the city manager to enter into a loan agreement to fund new phosphorus treatment facilities.
The city is requesting a loan from the Ohio EPA’s Water Pollution Control Loan Fund, according to city documents. The construction project is expected to cost between $7.5-$7.8 million.
The project includes new chemical feed equipment and storage, new thickening equipment for sludge generated from the process as well as other upgrades.
Dayton’s discharge permit for its wastewater treatment plant was renewed in 2016 and it required the city to reduce phosphorus levels in the wastewater effluent. The new limit requires the city to meet an annual average that is equivalent to 1 milligram per liter during the four driest months of the year, when the city and county wastewater treatment plants are the largest sources of phosphorus in the Great Miami River, according to Pierce.
There is no sewer rate increase directly attributable to this project, but rate increases have occurred to address wastewater treatment needs, reported Dayton Daily News.
According to Chris Clark, waste reclamation division manager, the state granted the city a generous compliance schedule to complete the design and construction of the phosphorus treatment facilities and has assisted in the design review process.
The design is complete so the city is going through the bidding and award process.