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Wastewater treatment


Stormwater Management

CEL has developed stormwater pollution prevention plans (SWPPP) to protect surface water quality for both industrial and government clients. To maintain compliance with their National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) stormwater permits, CEL has assisted its clients in writing site sampling plans as well as conducting industrial site surveys. CEL’s methodology for developing SWPPPs is based on a simple systematic approach that addresses: 1) stormwater regulatory and technical training, 2) interpretation of the significance of visual observations and 3) how to maintain regulatory compliance in the collection, management and reporting of storm water inspection information.

Groundwater Protection

CEL has assisted federal and state regulators in the development of best management practices (BMP) to mitigate the risk of groundwater contamination at biosolids beneficial use sites. Using its research and highly experienced IT personnel, CEL has applied the US EPA’s Multimedia, Multi-pathway, Multi-receptor Exposure and Risk Assessment (3MRA) technology to develop a BMP risk characterization screening tool (RCST). The RCST-3MRA technology allows groundwater managers and biosolids decision-makers to evaluate the potential impact of: 1) extreme environmental conditions (particularly those influenced by global climate change), 2) risk uncertainty, 3) nutrient loadings and 4) biosolids “microconstituents” on groundwater quality.

Industrial Wastewater Treatment

Developing innovative industrial pretreatment programs for metal finishing facilities have become core technical consulting expertise at CEL. CEL has evaluated a number of promising technologies to remove regulated pollutants from heavy metal waste streams including 1) electrocoagulation, 2) advanced oxidation, 3) chlorine addition, 4) sodium di-methyl dithiocarbonate addition and 5) sulfur redox chemistry. CEL has assisted clients in treating heavy metal waste streams impacted by chelating substances including oils and greases, soaps, detergents, citrus-based degreasers, surfactants and other commercial metal stabilizers.

Municipal Water and Wastewater Treatment

CEL continues to provide expert consulting services to wastewater treatment facilities to address nutrient management regulatory challenges as well as the development of local industrial discharge limits for protection of water and biosolids quality. CEL has taken a​ proactive and systematic approach by applying the concept of mass balance to ensure that regardless of the pollutant removal approaches employed, the results provide cost-effective opportunities for effluent water and treatment residuals recycling.

Wastewater Treatment Energy Auditing

CEL provides technical support to wastewater treatment facilities in identifying energy savings opportunities associated with pollutant removal processes. During an energy audit of a large water reclamation facility, CEL estimated that the energy cost for biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) removal varied from 0.85 kilowatt-hour (kW-hr) per pound of BOD removed to over 1.24 kW-hr per pound of BOD while the energy needed to remove ammonia varied from 8.0 kW-hr per pound of ammonia removed to 24 kW-hr per pound of ammonia removed. Clarifying the sources of variability and uncertainty in these energy ranges are at the core of identifying energy savings opportunities. CEL successfully demonstrated that improvement in energy efficiency results in a wide range of economic benefits including: reduction in air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, reduction in long term energy costs and improved water resource security.

Renewable Energy Production

CEL provides technical training to wastewater treatment professionals on how to generate renewable energy through co-digestion of sludge with agricultural, food processing residuals and other organic materials. While CEL’s domestic focus has been to demonstrate the benefits to biogas production from the co-digestion of fats, oil, and greases (FOG), CEL continues to provide technical consulting to international clients on the use food wastes and agricultural residues as renewable energy feedstocks. While feedstock identification is a major focus of CEL’s efforts, CEL has identified other financial benefits to clients including: 1) reduced solid waste disposal costs, 2) lower energy costs for wastewater treatment and 3) production of residual solids suitable for growing energy crops and/or producing animal feed.

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