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Strategic Abatement of Emissions to Economically Support Development of High Profile Real Estate Adjacent to a Wastewater Reclamation Facility

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The Des Moines Wastewater Reclamation Authority operates a 97-million gallon per day regional wastewater reclamation facility (WRF) largely constructed in the mid 1980s to serve the greater Des Moines, Iowa metropolitan area. Originally constructed in a largely rural area, current plans for the area around the WRF establish a need for emissions control to reduce offsite odor impacts, in addition to reducing odor emissions to the surrounding neighborhoods. Plans for the surrounding area include a major “Agrimergent Technology Park” targeting value-added agricultural research and production companies, major roadway improvements making the road past the reclamation facility a primary corridor into the downtown area, and extension of the Des Moines River trail system past the WRF.

The Emission Reduction Study presents a plan to strategically abate WRF emissions to economically avoid future issues. The plan is based on the following:

Comprehensive monitoring, sampling, and assessment of over 30 emissions sources at the WRF.

Prioritization of emission sources based on relative contribution to offsite odor levels.

Consideration of multiple technologies to control priority emissions.

Progressive control of WRF emissions to achieve short- and then long-term goals as warranted by development of the surrounding area.

This Study provides a template for other treatment plants to systematically identify and quantify odorous emissions, predict offsite odor levels and assess the relative contributions of individual emissions, establish short and long term goals for offsite odor levels, and develop a cost effective control plan using the appropriate technology to progressively target emissions focusing initially on those with the lowest cost to control. It also shares the findings and results achieved using this template for the Des Moines WRF.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2006

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  • Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is an archive of papers published in the proceedings of the annual Water Environment Federation® Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC® ) and specialty conferences held since the year 2000. These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

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