Sewage Effluent Turned to Snow: Provides Storage, Removes Pollutant

by Kenneth R. Wright, (M.ASCE), Partner; Wright-McLaughlin Engrs., Denver, Colo.,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1976, Vol. 46, Issue 5, Pg. 88-89

Document Type: Feature article


Sewage effluent can be stored in an artificial snowpack as evidenced by research performed in 1974 by the Upper Yampa Water Conservancy District of Colorado. The three month long experiment at the Mt. Werner Ski area included monitoring of pollutants in the effluent, in the snowpack and snowmelt runoff. Significant reduction in pollution levels occurred in the snowpack represented by 91% BOD5 reduction. After two months, fecal coliform concentrations met current limits of a body contact stream. Storage of effluent as snow has applicability for use at ski resorts, particularly for mountain top restaurants and terminals.

Subject Headings: Sewage | Effluents | Snow | Waste storage | Water conservation | Water storage | Snowmelt | Runoff | Colorado | United States

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