Wastewater Treatment for Cold Regions

by Daniel W. Smith, (M.ASCE), Prof. of Civ. Engrg.; Univ. of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada,

Serial Information: Journal of the Technical Councils of ASCE, 1982, Vol. 108, Issue 1, Pg. 138-149

Document Type: Journal Paper


The objectives of wastewater treatment in cold regions have been dictated by guidelines and regulations established for other regions. The impact of this occurrence has been extremely high cost for the protection of the aquatic environment and utilization of complex technology. The imposed and natural constraints that influence the selection, and may influence the performance, of wastewater treatment systems in cold regions are discussed. Factors such as natural dissolved oxygen depletion during ice cover and microorganism survival at low stream temperatures, population patterns and methods of water supply are addressed. Wastewater treatment methods are related to the water delivery and collection systems used. Wastewater strength can be divided into undiluted, moderately dilute, conventional and very dilute. The need for continued engineering research into more economic and reliable methods of treatment within the existing constraints is emphasized. Also, more research is required to increase understanding of natural constraints. The latter will aid in proper adjustment of imposed constraints.

Subject Headings: Wastewater treatment | Dissolved oxygen | Dilution | Aquatic habitats | Ice | Microbes | Rivers and streams | Temperature effects

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