World Water | Greater Chicago’s nutrient recovery facility wins top award
The MWRD of Greater Chicago’s Nutrient Recovery Facility at Stickney Water Reclamation Plant improves local waterways by significantly reducing waterway phosphorus levels through recovery and reuse of vital nutrients.
November 30, 2017 – Read original article
The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago’s Stickney Water Reclamation Plant won the Project Excellence Award from the Water Environment Federation (WEF). The facility is the world’s largest nutrient recovery facility that improves water quality of the Chicago Area Waterway System while reducing downstream phosphorus discharges into the Gulf of Mexico. The award was presented to the project’s owner, the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (MWRD); Black & Veatch, the facility’s design-builder; and technology provider, Ostara Nutrient Recovery Technologies during WEFTEC 2017.
The project was instrumental in transitioning the largest wastewater treatment facility in the world – the Stickney Water Reclamation Plant, located in Cicero, Illinois, United States (US) – into a resource recovery facility. Using Ostara’s nutrient recovery technology, Black & Veatch worked with the MWRD and Ostara to design and build the nutrient recovery facility, which is reducing nutrient loads to the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal, Des Plaines River, Illinois River, and ultimately the Mississippi River and Gulf of Mexico.
“We are extremely honored to have received this recognition from WEF and have been fortunate to partner with the MWRD of Greater Chicago and Black & Veatch to build the largest nutrient recovery facility in the world, providing a cost-effective and environmentally progressive solution to support the MWRD’s clean water mandate,” says Dan Parmar, president and CEO of Ostara. “This solution will ultimately help protect the Mississippi River Basin and provide a revenue stream to the District from the sale of the high value phosphorus fertilizer recovered.”
The differentiator with Ostara’s nutrient recovery solution implemented at the facility is that in addition to reducing phosphorus loads within the operational system of the plant by recovering these nutrients into a high-value, marketable fertilizer, nutrient loads are also reduced downstream into the Mississippi River to help address phosphorus deposits in the Gulf.
“The MWRD is thrilled to receive the Project Excellence Award from the Water Environment Federation. We thank our partners at Black & Veatch and Ostara for helping us achieve this honor and developing the innovations that protect our environment and benefit our taxpayers,” says MWRD President Mariyana Spyropoulos. “The nutrient recovery facility represents cleaner waterways locally and abroad, creates an instant revenue stream, provides for the agricultural community, and aids the planet in facing a scarcity of phosphorus and harmful algae blooms.”
Designed to treat up to 5.5 billion liters of water each day and serving more than 2.3 million residents including the central part of Chicago and 46 suburban communities, the Stickney Water Reclamation Plant is pioneering this critical industry shift from water treatment to recovery for reuse.
“This facility richly illustrates how innovation combined with decades of water and wastewater treatment expertise can produce new efficiencies as well as wins for the environment,” says Mike Orth, executive managing director for the Americas in Black & Veatch’s water business.
The award was presented during WEF’s Annual Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC), the world’s largest annual water quality conference and exhibition, held in Chicago on September 30-October 4, 2017. Based in Alexandria, Virginia, US, WEF bestows the annual Project Excellence Award to outstanding programs and product execution in the water sector. Among other criteria, projects are evaluated on innovation, sustainability, and community benefit.