Not only do the three Water Reclamation Facilities in Athens-Clarke County (ACC) reclaim, refresh, and return our water, but the facilities themselves have been reclaimed, refreshed, and returned.
The first ACC wastewater treatment plant was built in 1962 along the North Oconee River. Another soon followed by the Middle Oconee in 1964 and a third began operations near Cedar Creek in 1980. Advances in wastewater treatment technology and population growth made it necessary ACC improve and expand the capacity of these plants. By 2012, the North Oconee and Cedar Creek plants had been decommissioned and new facilities were built and are operating in these locations. The Middle Oconee plant received a complete and extensive upgrade.
The plants are now referred to as Water Reclamation Facilities (WRF). The effluent (discharge) from a WRF is of such high quality, it can be reused in irrigation and safely returned to our waterways. The water is “reclaimed”.
All three facilities replaced dangerous chlorine gas with a disinfection system consisting of ultraviolet lights. A cutting-edge SCADA Plant Control System allows operators to supervise all functions of the WRF from one location. The WRFs have enhanced environmental protection and ended odor issues in the neighboring areas. Schedule a tour of a WRF and see the changes for yourself!
What else is new?
At North Oconee:
Plant capacity increased from 10 to 14 million gallons a day
State-of-the-art influent pumps and controls
Larger interceptors for transporting wastewater to the plant