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Story Discussion: Conventional or biological water treatment?

Story Discussion: Conventional or biological water treatment?

(OP) Joan Thompson's article on water treatment approaches has been published at:

Conventional Water Treatment Can Be a Disaster for Small Communities


With an enormous expanse of lakes and rivers, it’s hard to believe that Canada would have any major issues supplying clean water to its residents—but unfortunately, this is the case.
For decades, First Nations communities in Canada have consistently dealt with mismatched water treatment systems, and the consequences have been disastrous....

Engineers, we want to hear from you:

- Small utilities are assigned conventional treatment technologies (eg. coagulation and flocculation, manganese greensand), without a proper assessment of their source water. Are there any civil engineers with similar frustrations? What other challenges arise when choosing the right treatment approach?

- Surveys show that regulatory officials and utility workers are hesitant to implement biological treatment technologies since it is an alternative treatment approach that is relatively new. Has anyone ever encountered specific challenges with biological water treatment that they think should be addressed? What problems arise with implementing them in small communities?

RE: Story Discussion: Conventional or biological water treatment?

A lot of the treatment methods that are selected to be used in small remote towns or villages are selected by engineering companies who don't have the depth of experience that is required. I call them package plant engineers. They think they know water treatment but they do not

In small remote towns or villages they do not have the expertise to run plants or to maintain them. There is too much electronics. In the old days we did not electronics just wire, pulleys and floats. In remote communities we should go back to their use. Everyone understands wire, pulleys and floats. It is also unrealistic to expect finished water quality to be as good as what is expected in a city. That type of quality costs money. Certain standards should relaxed.

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