Odours often associated with Salmon Arm’s wastewater treatment plant may have been difficult to detect as of late, and not just because of the smoke from wildfires.
In April, the city initiated a pilot project at the facility at 121 Narcisse St. NW, an aerobic granular sludge (AGS) technology being tried to determine if it would be a good fit for the plant’s future expansion.
Salmon Arm council gave city staff permission in February of this year to proceed with the project. One of the goals was to control the smell that can emanate from the plant.
A related staff report explained the AGS process is similar to what is currently used at the plant (convention activated sludge); however, the entire nutrient process is completed within single enclosed reactors, with reactors added as required. According to the report, the technology requires a small footprint and, “would allow the city to remove the majority of the existing open-air portions of the plant, maximizing odour control.”
At another February meeting, prior to approving the pilot project, council voted to keep and expand upon the wastewater treatment plant at its current address. This followed a lengthy study that included opportunities for public input on proposed locations for the plant. Three other suggested locations were the north industrial park, the light industrial park on the southeast side of town, and Minion Field on 30th Street SW.
Expansion of the current site was the least expensive at an estimated $50 million. Minion Field was next at $101 million, while the north industrial park and the light industrial park options were each estimated to be in the $115 million range.
The AGS pilot project is scheduled to be completed by the end of August.
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