A Perspective on Performance Variability in Municipal Wastewater Treatment Facilities

by Lewis A. Rossman, (M.ASCE), US EPA, Cincinnati, OH, USA,
John J. Convery, US EPA, Cincinnati, OH, USA,



Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Water Forum '86: World Water Issues in Evolution

Abstract: Excessive variability in effluent quality can cause wastewater treatment plants to fail to meet their discharge permit limits. This paper summarizes our understanding of the nature, causes, and control of this variability. It discusses studies made on the differences in performance variability observed among plants, the statistical characterization of this variability, and investigations into its causes. Methods of controlling and accomodating effluent variability are briefly reviewed. The results of an EPA workshop to develop research objectives related to these problems are discussed.

Subject Headings: Effluents | Wastewater treatment plants | Statistics | Municipal wastewater | Water discharge | Permits | Environmental Protection Agency | Research and development

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