Case Study: Recycling Facility
Chain of Recycling Facilities Implements StormPROOF to Treat “Off-the-Charts” TSS and COD
One of the biggest challenges that most recycling facilities face in storm water compliance is the extremely high volumes of trash that accompany recycled materials such as glass and aluminum. Upwards of 60 percent of all the raw materials at some recycling facilities is garbage. This trash attracts birds and rodents that leave behind bio-waste that leeches through all the materials during rain events.
This scenario creates high amounts of TSS (total suspended solids) and COD (chemical oxygen demand) that can be sticky and slimy, and cast off strong odor. In the case of one of Storm Water Systems’ clients, a chain of recycling facilities that operates throughout California, the TSS amounts were “off-the-charts” high with levels of 2000-2600, which is 20-26 times the NAL exceedance threshold.
From a storm water management standpoint, these types of decomposing materials trigger higher levels of iron, which require additional, different media to prevent exceedances. In addition, these facilities were dealing with high levels of aluminum, a natural byproduct of the glass that was present, and zinc. Alone, each of these metals presents complications in storm water treatment, but – together – the three (iron, aluminum, and zinc) created a unique challenge.
Added on top of merely treating the various pollutants was the desire by the chain to get its facilities from Level 1 and possible Level 2 status down to baseline status.
Our StormPROOF™ Treatment System’s modular design enabled us to create a foundational setup that could be implemented at each of the chain’s facilities, then tailored to meet the needs of each specific location. For example, one of the chain’s Southern California-based facilities had unusual high amounts of iron in the storm water. Another one in the Los Angeles area had high TSS and COD. Another facility in the Sacramento area had NAL exceedances that – if left untreated – would almost certainly place it in Level 2 status.
The installation of the StormPROOF™ Treatment System has placed all three of these facilities on the path toward achieving baseline status in the near future.