Environmental Initiatives | Fort Collins - Loveland Water District

SFCSD Environmental Initiatives

Environmentally friendly may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of wastewater. At the South Fort Collins Sanitation District, however, taking steps to be more environmentally conscious is something we’re constantly striving toward.

Our goal is to not only meet our discharge permit requirement put forth by the State and the EPA, but to continually exceed our permitted limits in the treatment of wastewater. We do this by efficiently and dependably producing the highest quality reclaimed water using the latest technologies to continually protect human health and the environment

A Natural Process

Picture of wastewater being treated in the orbal

Many people assume that we use large amounts of chemicals to “clean the water,” which isn’t the case. The wastewater that comes to the SFCSD reclamation facility is 99.94% plain old water; only .06% of the flow is considered waste products that require treatment. Sources of wastewater are every drain inside homes, businesses, schools, restaurants, etc.; the most common are, showers, sinks, floor drains, toilets, and car washes.

The treatment process at the water reclamation facility mimics the natural process that exists in lakes and streams. We provide an environment for naturally occurring bacteria to thrive so they can breakdown the waste products and convert it into CO2 and water, thus leaving clean water to return to the environment after a final disinfection process using ultra-violet light that leaves no byproducts. Treated water is then deposited into Fossil Creek Reservoir.

Future Goals

As a result of the treatment process, an organic biosolid is created. Currently, this biosolid has to be composted. Our future goal is to regulate the composition of this Class A biosolid so that it can have alternative uses like fertilizing yards or fields. One fun fact? This biosolid contains less bacteria than eggnog!

We currently overtreat our water (so what we put out is cleaner than what is required by law) as a buffer against changing regulations. This prevents us from having to overtreat with chemicals, as some facilities do when they get in a jam. We continue to look for ways to improve our process and put out water that will meet future regulations in a way that remains environmentally friendly.