Water treatment improvement project 99 percent complete
From a pilot study to an operational system, the nearly two-year improvement project at Manistique’s water treatment plant is 99 percent complete. With all processing upgrades operational for the past four weeks, Water-Wastewater Supervisor Corey Barr says crews are now working on a small punch list of items necessary to complete the $6.8 million dollar project, which has been underway for the past 19 months.
Manistique is now the only facility in the Upper Peninsula, and one of just four across the state, to use ozone in its water-treatment process. The system was designed to bring the city into compliance with tightening federal standards on the levels of haloacetic acids in the municipal water supply. Haloacetic acids are a so-called “disinfection byproduct,” a term for suspected cancer-causing agents that are created when water is treated to remove organic carbon. The addition of ozone to the treatment process was designed to address that issue. Through a complex series of steps, ozone is created from oxygen, added to the water pumped into the plant from the river, and filtered through granulated activated carbon before additional treatments occur. While ozone treatment is still relatively new in the United States, it has been used in Canada and Europe for many years.
While the project is just now nearing completion, Barr says the system has already been in compliance with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency guidelines and has been for the past 24 months. As soon as the punch list is complete, Barr says, they plan on holding an open house to showcase the facility to the public.