A Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) in Australia that is operated by a state government authority is responsible for the delivery of retail water supply and wastewater services across five areas in the state. Due to a planning decision, a new cruise ship terminal was built adjacent to the existing WWTP.

Now, even during routine operations, under certain adverse weather conditions, the plant can produce undesirable odours from its sludge drying pans and impact the nearby passenger terminal. The facility is also accepting additional solid waste from the nearest waste treatment plant following flood damage, significantly increasing emissions.

If odour emissions generate sufficient complaints, regulatory actions could be initiated against the plant, including the potential for substantial fines, forcing a review of operational procedures and potential changes in end-use. In addition, the facility could face substantial negative publicity by impacting the state’s tourism industry.

Achieving situational awareness of odour impact

The sewage plant worked with Envirosuite to implement a solution that guides the odour control methods that are already available at the site, and to provide operators with a dynamic approach for predicting and assessing impacts. Envirosuite worked with the ground staff team to understand the nuances of the facility and its location relative to the neighbouring site and adverse weather conditions.

Envirosuite’s Omnis Software as a Service (SaaS) platform provides continuous monitoring and alerts to inform control actions, as well as advanced predictive risk forecasts tailored to the site’s operation that enable actions to be taken in advance of an issue even developing.

Omnis odour monitoring capabilities in real time at a wastewater treatment plant.

Automating compliance reporting and mitigating site-generated odour emissions

Omnis is designed to automate regular reporting, outlining compliance with regulations or assurance standards, and detailing any breaches.

In terms of maintaining compliance with license conditions, Omnis delivers an early warning of potential odour events and easy analysis of past events to manage and report on the information required by regulators and the community. It enables the WWTP operators to assess the data by a range of charts, tools and analytical features by location and time of day.

Additionally, Omnis smart alerts, based on a wide range of parameters, enable the ground staff to act before a breach occurs. Each rule has a warning and exceedance threshold. The warning threshold allows operators to take corrective actions before a breach occurs. These alerts are configured for sensitive periods, such as expected ship arrival and departure windows, differences in operating at evening and night, or other seasonal and diurnal considerations.

Omnis odour risk report using hyperlocal weather forecasting.

Reducing impact on port operations using insights from hyperlocal forecasts

Envirosuite worked with the WWTP teams to build a comprehensive understanding of conditions likely to influence odour impacts at the neighbouring port.

Omnis automatically generates hyperlocal forecasts for the next three to seven days and emails an Odour Risk Report to the operational teams at the beginning of every day. The platform’s hyperlocal forecasts help identify periods when the use of odour control equipment will be necessary.

Reducing investigation time of problematic odour sources

Impact modelling combines observed (weather station data) or forecast weather models with known odour emission sources for the operations to create a site-specific plume dispersion model.

Omnis uses odour dispersion modelling from the sludge pans and plant processes to display animated plume contours that indicate levels of odour being dispersed from the emission source.  The site operators use this to understand how to approach the next 72 hours using dispersion modelling to plan for high-risk periods.

Site-specific odour plume dispersion modelling capabilities at a sewage treatment plant.

Tangible results after implementation

The WWTP in Australia is now achieving tangible ROI using Omnis by:

1. Avoiding financial penalties 

Forecast periods of high risk of odour impacting the adjacent port now help the operators schedule and conduct operations at times not likely to impact port visitors or neighbouring communities.

2. Reducing costs of odour control 

Alerts suited to the site’s licence conditions provide real-time alerts when weather conditions and current odour emission levels could impact the port, so odour control units can be activated and deactivated for optimum impact and operating costs.

3. Shorting Investigation time of emission events

The Australian waste management facility can now use highly accurate insights from hyperlocal weather modelling to establish if any odour was shed over the neighbouring businesses.

4. Digitising manual data collection

The WWTP can now respond to enquiries from regulators and other third parties using hard, scientifically robust data at any given time. Data and reports are also highly useful for internal assurance purposes, communicating large volumes of complex material in graphs and charts that is easily digestible by non-experts.

Read more of Envirosuite customer stories and find out how other landfills and industrial operators are using Envirosuite solutions to proactively manage dust, odour and air quality concerns around their facilities.

This sponsored editorial is brought to you by Envirosuite. For further information, please visit https://envirosuite.com.

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