The City of York wastewater treatment plant emphasize sustainability and resource recovery, turning ordinary sewage into useful products. We biologically extract methane gas to generate electrical power and heat for processes and buildings. We biologically remove pollution, nitrogen and phosphorus from the water primarily by manipulating oxygen levels in the plant, as opposed to adding chemicals or using expensive membrane technologies. All of our biosolids are stabilized, conditioned and applied to Pennsylvania farmland as a soil conditioner and fertilizer, which is recycling on a grand scale. We extract and pelletize phosphorus in the form of a clean, marketable fertilizer product. We disinfect our treated water prior to stream release using ultraviolet disinfection, which is much more friendly to stream biology than chemical disinfection. We reuse some of our treated effluent as in-plant process and spray water.
Examples of ways that the wastewater treatment plant utilizes sustainibility include:
♦ Biological nutrient removal to naturally treat the wastewater while minimizing chemicals
♦ Anaerobic digestion to extract methane gas
♦ Microturbine generators to produce electric power from the methane and get peak load rebates from energy utilities
♦ Fertilizer plant to produce a clean pelletized fertilizer for resale
♦ Agricultural utilization of biosolids to recycle nutrients and save landfill space