First to Recycle Greensand Backwash Water in Massachusetts

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Water Treatment Facility – Natick, Massachusetts

Due to contamination from Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) at two of the Town’s water supply wells, the Town of Natick took steps to construct a water treatment facility to treat the water from the contaminated wells. Tata & Howard conducted a water treatment facility siting evaluation and pilot study; and completed the design of the treatment facility, which utilizes air stripping and pressure filtration technology.

During the course of the design, it was determined that the backwash water would not be permitted by the MWRA to be discharged into the sewer system. Therefore, alternatives needed to be evaluated. One option was to provide holding tanks for the backwash water. This would enable the Town to recycle the supernatant to the head of the facility and therefore, minimize waste of the supply water. Since the area was not conducive for the installation of drying beds, the sludge collected at the bottom of the holding tank was removed by means of a septage hauler.

Tata & Howard proposed to recycle the backwash water, which required DEP approval as it had not been done before in the state. The DEP now requires the use of recycled backwash water in all new water treatment facilities in Massachusetts.