The city of Jackson is hoping to reduce its energy consumption through an upgrade at its wastewater treatment facility this December.
City engineer Kent Peetz said the project is still in the bidding process but that if there are no major problems or delays, the upgrade should be complete by the end of 2011.
Money for the project comes from the city and a grant through the Energize Missouri Communities program in the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. The program distributes money received from the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act to municipalities to finance projects that reduce energy consumption.
While Peetz did not want to comment on the amount of the grant because the project was still in the bidding process, a March news release from the Missouri Department of Natural Resources said the grant was worth $466,275. Peetz said the project should be able to pay for itself in seven years.
"The whole idea is to save money. The wastewater plant is a big user of electricity. We are trying to be proactive and save energy. That's good stuff," he said.
Peetz said when wastewater arrives at the facility, larger solids are separated from liquid. A series of rotors then agitates the remaining water, adding oxygen to encourage the bacterial growth that helps break down the remaining solids. Variable-frequency drives will be added to those rotors during the upgrade so the speed can be controlled. As less oxygen is needed, rotor speed will be decreased. As more is needed, rotor speed will be increased. The facility will also be outfitted with two oxygen probes to monitor the oxygen level in the water.
Peetz said being able to deliver the precise amount of energy needed at the facility will eliminate wasteful consumption.
"This will allow us to really fine-tune the process and adjust to wastewater needs," he said.
The facility is also replacing three of its four centrifugal blowers with blowers that use less energy. The blowers are used near the end of the treatment process and add more oxygen to the waste, further breaking down solids.
2230 Lee Ave., Jackson, MO