Fundação Renova

EFFECTIVE TECHNOLOGY FOR WASTEWATER TREATMENT IN THE RESETTLEMENTS

Published in: 04/05/2019

Reassentamentos , Resettlements

Residents of Bento Rodrigues and Paracatu de Baixo are getting familiar with the WWTPs system that will be installed in the communities

 

The water we consume is usually collected from rivers, wells or lakes and has to undergo some treatment processes before being distributed and consumed. And after use, other measures are necessary for it to be released back to the environment without causing harm. This is what we call wastewater treatment, not only very important for the environment, but also for human health. Therefore, a new project is being implemented for the wastewater system in the resettlements of Bento Rodrigues and Paracatu de Baixo, in Mariana (MG).

Domestic water is any water that has been used for bathing, doing the laundry or dishes, or flushing the toilet. Water withdrawal and treatment systems reduce the risk of contamination and transmission of diseases, and control the pollution of water bodies such as streams, ponds and rivers – the main alternative sources of water withdrawal for communities living nearby.

The treatment of domestic wastewater already begins inside the house, in the grease trap and passage. Then it is piped to a Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP), where it will go through other stages (see below). It is only after a long process that treated wastewater can be discharged to the river or reused to irrigate trees and gardens, for example.

Illustration: Humberto Guima

WWTP Basic stages:

  1. Preliminary stage in which the sewage goes through some grids and a sandbox for removing solid waste.
  2. Sewage goes through a pond where organic matter is removed.
  3. Finally, in the following ponds, sunlight eliminates microorganisms that cause diseases.

 

[Image merely illustrative]

 

Guilherme Tavares, the sanitary engineer responsible for the project, explains that “this cycle takes 21 days, which makes the operation of the plant extremely secure. If there is a big event in the communities and the water consumption increases for a few days, the system can handle that overhead without any problems.”

It is important to emphasize that, according to the National Institute of Science and Technology in Sustainable WWTPs, the wastewater system which is being developed does not generate any bad smell, provided that it is operated properly – good news for the families that will live near the WWTPs. In addition, maintenance is simple, without the need for chemicals or electricity for its correct operation.

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