Apr 16, 2010 8:21 PM by Stephanie Collins
The Wastewater Treatment Plant in Pueblo is cleaning up its act. Solar panels are being put in, and a greener way to disinfect the wastewater is being proposed.
"Were building a solar array to supply electrical energy to defray needs we have here at the treatment plant," says plant director Gene Michael. The 1300 solar panels will fill an acre of land an while it will only supply about a quarter of the plants demand, they hope to add more panels in the future.
The project is funded by the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, and the plant hopes to also use some of the money to start a better disinfection system, "We have applied to convert our disinfection process to ultraviolet disinfection, and move away from gaseous chlorine," says Michael.
Chlorine is used to kill bacteria and viruses, and another toxic gas is used to neutralize the chlorine. Michael says moving away from the chemicals will make it safer for everyone, "If we can switch to UV disinfectant all of our bulk chemical storage goes away and that's safer for staff, safer for the community, and safer for the environment."
While the UV system wont be up and running for a while, the plant will be receiving 300 kilowatts from the solar panels by the end of the summer.