Presentation Abstract

From 1980 to 2011, the City of Blaine’s wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) was located on Semiahmoo Spit, a peninsula west of the city, across the mouth of Drayton Harbor. During those years, raw sewage from Blaine traveled in a pipe across the waters of Drayton Harbor for treatment. Pollution challenges included leaks in the transfer pipe and a failing collection system that allowed inflow and infiltration to overwhelm the system during rain events. The WWTP reached its capacity in the late 1990s. WWTP upgrade construction began in 1999 at the Semiahmoo Spit site. Contractor mismanagement of Native American human remains uncovered during excavation resulted in termination of the construction contract in 2000. Blaine agreed to abandon the site. While the city pursued new wastewater treatment options, the existing plant continued to operate. Effluent quality often failed to meet limits allowed in the plant’s discharge permit. For collection system fixes, the city provided temporary storage each winter and developed an aggressive inflow and infiltration detection and elimination program. Blaine led construction of the Lighthouse Point Water Reclamation Facility (LPWRF) at the city’s edge along Marine Park. Completed in 2011, the LPWRF features membrane bioreactor technology and produces Class A reclaimed water used for several non-potable purposes. The old pipe across Drayton Harbor now carries re-use water to Semiahmoo Spit. Sewage from Semiahmoo Spit is carried across the mouth of Drayton Harbor in a seamless pipe. The improved infrastructure reduced bacteria pollution to the marine water. Grant funding in 2014 enabled increased efforts to detect and fix pipe infrastructure defects, monitor water quality, engage community members in watershed healthy habits, and begin restoration of an important creek corridor.

Session Title

Drayton Harbor Shellfish Recovery: A Case Study of Local Collaboration

Keywords

Water quality improvement, Water quality challenges

Conference Track

SSE2: Collaboration and Engagement

Conference Name

Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference (Seattle, WA : 2018)

Document Type

Event

SSEC Identifier

SSE2-586

Start Date

6-4-2018 8:45 AM

End Date

6-4-2018 9:00 AM

Type of Presentation

Oral

Contributing Repository

Digital content made available by University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Geographic Coverage

Salish Sea (B.C. and Wash.)

Rights

This resource is displayed for educational purposes only and may be subject to U.S. and international copyright laws. For more information about rights or obtaining copies of this resource, please contact University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA 98225-9103, USA (360-650-7534; heritage.resources@wwu.edu) and refer to the collection name and identifier. Any materials cited must be attributed to the Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference Records, University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Type

text

Language

English

Format

application/pdf

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Apr 6th, 8:45 AM Apr 6th, 9:00 AM

Small city meets big water quality improvement challenges

From 1980 to 2011, the City of Blaine’s wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) was located on Semiahmoo Spit, a peninsula west of the city, across the mouth of Drayton Harbor. During those years, raw sewage from Blaine traveled in a pipe across the waters of Drayton Harbor for treatment. Pollution challenges included leaks in the transfer pipe and a failing collection system that allowed inflow and infiltration to overwhelm the system during rain events. The WWTP reached its capacity in the late 1990s. WWTP upgrade construction began in 1999 at the Semiahmoo Spit site. Contractor mismanagement of Native American human remains uncovered during excavation resulted in termination of the construction contract in 2000. Blaine agreed to abandon the site. While the city pursued new wastewater treatment options, the existing plant continued to operate. Effluent quality often failed to meet limits allowed in the plant’s discharge permit. For collection system fixes, the city provided temporary storage each winter and developed an aggressive inflow and infiltration detection and elimination program. Blaine led construction of the Lighthouse Point Water Reclamation Facility (LPWRF) at the city’s edge along Marine Park. Completed in 2011, the LPWRF features membrane bioreactor technology and produces Class A reclaimed water used for several non-potable purposes. The old pipe across Drayton Harbor now carries re-use water to Semiahmoo Spit. Sewage from Semiahmoo Spit is carried across the mouth of Drayton Harbor in a seamless pipe. The improved infrastructure reduced bacteria pollution to the marine water. Grant funding in 2014 enabled increased efforts to detect and fix pipe infrastructure defects, monitor water quality, engage community members in watershed healthy habits, and begin restoration of an important creek corridor.