Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper has proclaimed the week of April 22-28 “Wastewater Worker Recognition Week” statewide. The proclamation honors the work of about 4,000 certified wastewater treatment plant operators and thousands of engineers, maintenance personnel, laboratory workers, scientists, biosolids workers, sewer maintenance workers, industrial waste pretreatment workers, administrative staff, and suppliers to the industry. Mayor Tom Norton will sign a proclamation similar to the one signed by Governor Hickenlooper on April 17.
Greeley’s Water Pollution Control Facility (WPCF) has won awards for its outstanding efforts as an outstanding wastewater treatment plant and environmental steward. WPCF won the Plant Performance Merit Award presented by the Rocky Mountain Water Environment Association (RMWEA) four times in 1992, 1999, 2005, and 2011. In February, WPCF was recognized by Xcel Energy for energy efficiency, as it won the 2011 Custom Efficiency Achievement Award. WPCF was chosen by Xcel because of the installation of high-speed turbo blowers to improve aeration at the plant. It is estimated that these new blowers will save the plant approximately $100,000 - $120,000 annually in projected electrical energy costs.
Greeley Wastewater employees are innovative as well. In 2009, the Wastewater Operations staff built a customized and low cost solution to treat high strength ammonia, resulting in a daily 307-pound reduction in ammonia waste that requires treatment. In 2011, filter boxes were designed and installed at the blower building that houses the six new high-efficiency blowers; this project helps keep the building clean and dust free. This year, plant staff will be participating in a Northern Colorado “Get Into Water” program which is designed to recruit and train individuals for the water/wastewater industry. Specifically, water and wastewater utilities are very concerned about workforce/succession planning and continuity issues as many utility workers begin to retire. This program will increase the public’s awareness of water industry career opportunities. The treatment plant is also evaluating a possible 500 KW solar energy project for the treatment plant and other energy reduction technologies.
Group or individual tours of Greeley’s Water Pollution Control Facility are available for citizens to learn more about wastewater treatment. Please call (970) 350-9360 for more information. Visit the Water and Sewer Department’s website for more on Greeley’s wastewater system: www.greeleygov.com/water/wastewater.aspx.