GWI launches pilot project to treat wastewater

0
GWI’s CEO, Shaik Baksh being shown the wastewater treatment process using the model plant

The Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) is currently piloting a wastewater treatment plant at the Tucville sewer station aimed at identifying a sustainable solution for treating Guyana’s wastewater.

This pilot project will allow the company, to assess the suitability and removal efficiency of the selected treatment processes.

These treatment processes are eco-friendly and allow for water, nutrient, and energy recovery.

Chief Executive Officer of the Water Company, Shaik Baksh and a team of technical officials visited the facility on Friday and had a first hard look at the operation.

The treatment process includes physical treatment by screening and grit removal, biological treatment using the up-flow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactor followed by a constructed wetland and Ultraviolet disinfection.

Further, the selected treatment processes will allow for resource recovery such as biogas, water and fertilizer. This treated waste will comply with wastewater reuse standard for non-potable uses.

Baksh, while touring the facility, stressed the importance of Guyana moving towards the treatment of wastewater, especially given the massive development on the horizon in the country, particularly in the tourism industry.

He alluded to the positive impact wastewater treatment facilities will have on the environment.

Construction of the wastewater treatment facilities, however, would require funding from external agencies and Baksh noted that he will be engaging central Government for financial support to ensure this becomes a reality.

In fact, GWI’s new strategic plan for 2021- 2025 includes an investment programme for wastewater treatment plants.

According to him, over the last 10 years, significant investments were made to refurbish and develop the sewerage network in Georgetown. The next step, therefore, is the construction of wastewater treatment facilities.

While the pilot plant has the treatment capacity of 5 cubic meters per day, it will provide the optimum operating conditions, which will be adapted for the designing of the actual 600 cubic meter per day wastewater treatment plant at Tucville.

The Georgetown sewerage system consists of 24 pumping stations that receive wastewater from the central Georgetown area while the Tucville sewerage system consists of a receiving station that collects wastewater from the Tucville and Stevedore areas. The two systems collect wastewater from a fixed population of 60,000 persons and a transient population of 200,000 persons daily.

In addition to the fulfillment of the company’s mission, wastewater treatment facilities will allow for Guyana’s compliance with the Cartagena Convention and its protocol relative to land based sources of pollution.

Compliance with the Environmental Protection Agency Act relating to discharge standard would also be achieved. Further, it will bring Guyana closer to realizing Sustainable Development Goals number 6, 7 and 14.

The pilot of the plant will seek to produce biogas for cooking purposes and electrical usage.