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Discharge Cost Reduction

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Water treatment plants play a vital role in ensuring that the water we consume is safe and free of harmful contaminants. However, one of the major challenges for these plants is the high cost of discharging treated water. When (waste) water is eventually discharged to the sewer system or to an in-house water treatment plant, significant costs are charged. A water board charges a treatment levy for this and this can add up to a high cost. Discharge costs include the cost of treating and disposing of the effluent or wastewater generated by the plant. Reducing discharge costs is critical to making wastewater treatment plants more cost-effective and efficient.

What strategies can help achieve this goal?

There are several ways water treatment plants can reduce their discharge costs. What strategies can help achieve this goal?


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Optimizing treatment processes

One of the most effective ways to reduce wastewater treatment plant discharge costs is to optimize treatment processes. This involves identifying the most effective treatment methods and technologies for the specific type of wastewater generated by the plant. By using the right treatment processes, the plant can reduce the amount of wastewater produced, thereby reducing discharge costs.

In addition, optimizing treatment processes also helps reduce energy and chemical consumption for treatment, further reducing plant operating costs. Using advanced treatment technologies such as membrane filtration, reverse osmosis and nanofiltration can also help reduce discharge costs by producing high-quality effluent that requires minimal treatment before discharge.

Reuse of water

Another effective strategy to reduce discharge costs is water reuse. Water reuse involves treating and recycling wastewater for non-potable purposes such as irrigation, industrial processes and toilet flushing. By reusing water, the plant reduces the amount of wastewater produced, thereby reducing discharge costs. Reusing water also helps conserve water resources, which is becoming increasingly important as water scarcity becomes a global problem.

Various technologies and methods exist for water reuse, including membrane filtration, ultrafiltration and reverse osmosis. The choice of technology and method depends on the specific application and required water quality.

Energy recovery

Water treatment plants consume a significant amount of energy during treatment processes. Energy recovery is a strategy that captures and utilizes the energy generated during the treatment processes. By recovering and using the energy, the plant reduces its energy consumption, thereby reducing the plant’s operating costs.

There are several methods of energy recovery, including using anaerobic digestion to produce biogas, which can be used to generate electricity or heat. Using heat exchangers to recover and reuse heat generated during the treatment process is another effective strategy.

Process control and monitoring

Process control and monitoring are essential to ensure that treatment processes are optimized and operate at maximum efficiency. By monitoring and controlling treatment processes, the plant can identify areas of inefficiency and make adjustments to reduce discharge costs.

Advanced process control systems that use artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms can help optimize treatment processes and reduce plant operating costs. These systems can monitor and analyze real-time data, identify inefficient areas and automatically make adjustments to optimize treatment processes.

Sludge Management

Sludge management is an essential aspect of wastewater treatment plants that can significantly affect discharge costs. Sludge is the solid waste generated during treatment processes and requires proper management to minimize disposal costs. By optimizing sludge management, the plant can reduce the amount of sludge produced and the associated disposal costs.

Advanced sludge treatment technologies such as anaerobic digestion, aerobic digestion and thermal hydrolysis can help reduce the amount of sludge produced and produce high-quality biosolids that can be used for agricultural purposes or as an energy source.

Reduction of discharge costs

Reducing the discharge costs of wastewater treatment plants is essential to making them more efficient and sustainable. Different strategies can help wastewater treatment plants achieve this goal. By reducing discharge costs, wastewater treatment plants can operate more cost-effectively, conserve water resources and minimize the environmental impacts of their operations. It is essential that water treatment plants implement these strategies and continually seek new ways to reduce discharge costs and improve their operations.

Eliminating pollution directly reduces this cost. And for an in-house treatment plant, installing a fine screen also provides the savings in aeration energy and sludge handling.

The Deployment of Inovative Technologies:

What can Cirtec do for you in this regard?

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By deploying the IntenSieve, suspended solids are removed from the water, thus directly achieving an effect on the amount of material discharged to the sewer or to the in-house purification, leading to savings on discharge costs.

Vegetable processing industry

The vegetable processing industry is a very broad branch of industry, but looking at the water to be discharged, either to the sewer or to its own treatment plant, it is the same for many companies, namely that there are often significant costs paid for wastewater treatment. 

The water being discharged contains dissolved contaminants; the finescreen cannot do anything with that. Another story are the bits of vegetables that end up in the water. These particles have different sizes, making them easy to capture with filtration on the sieve cloth of a CirTec fine sieve, without dosing chemicals. 

Meanwhile, CirTec fine screens are in operation at several locations (fresh-cut vegetable production, frozen vegetables, jarred or canned vegetables, etc.).

Potato processing industry

Potato processing also releases wastewater streams. The potatoes are washed, peeled, cut and further processed. The water streams contain varying loads of particles. Again, a difference in particle size makes filtration with fine screens quite possible without the need for chemicals. Sometimes a useful use can be found again for the separated material.

Plastic recycling industry

An entirely different industry with entirely different water flows is the plastic recycling industry. These companies use large amounts of water for rinsing and cleaning the incoming plastics. Collected water should be used as often as possible in the various washing cycles.

Interim filtration using the CirTec fine sieve ensures that suspended materials (pieces of plastic, paper, labels, sand, adhering dirt from the plastic, etc.) are captured and removed from the water. After dewatering, these materials are discharged as compact material and the water can go through several flushing cycles before it is finally discharged.

case studies

Stay in the Loop

17 April 2020 Stay in the LOOP Students at Berlin’s Fachhochschule Potsdam conducted research on the use, reuse and circular potential of toilet

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SMART Plant fact sheets

11 May 2020 SMART – Plant fact sheets As part of the Horizon2020 project SMART-Plant, fact sheets were prepared by Kompetenz Wasser Berlin

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Contact us

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Want to know more about what Cirtec can do for your company or organization? What are the possibilities to filter raw materials from your wastewater and reuse them, contact us or make an appointment in our calendar!