The Sweet Smell Of Improvement
The Green River sewer project was recently completed. The project has been a long time coming to take the strain off the old overloaded system. The new system consists of four lift stations located strategically across town. The sewer comes into the lift station and is fed through a grinder.
When the system becomes so full the pumps turn on and pump it to the next station. The sewer moves along the 12" pipes by the pull of gravity to the next lift station which is located near the golf course. From there it goes to lift station four which is south of lift station two and near the railroad tracks. Each lift station contains cedar chips to absorb the odor. The chips are wet down automatically in the summer to keep the odor down. This isn't necessary in the winter when the smell isn't bad.
The pipeline project took approximately seven months, as pipe was installed throughout the city. A manhole was installed every 300-400 feet to allow for maintanence and pumping. The city owns a vacuum truck and a jet rodder for maintenance operations.
From there it is pumped into the lagoons where it evaporates. The pumps at lift station four are larger because that is where everything ends up and is pumped on into the lagoons.
City workers said, "The new system gives us a lot more capacity and the smell has improved 100 percent. Even though the lagoons are quite a ways out of town, you could still smell the odor down in town when the wind blew. We have a big demand on our systems. Our town has 600 motel rooms and they really taxed the old system. The new system will take care of all those drainage problems.
"The sewer lagoons have floating pipes through which air is pumped into the water. This aeration system keeps the oxygen going into the water. When the first pond is full the water will syphon into the other ponds. The fourth pond is the evaporation pond. We have goats at the ponds now that eat the weeds and keep them under control. We used to have to come out and take care of all the weeds, but the goats have solved that problem.
"We don't have any algae or moss or anything on the ponds. We have a lot of water fowl that live out here and a lot that stop in as they are passing through. The birds out here are amazing and fun to watch. The goats all have fresh water to drink," they said.
David Chartier from SunRise engineering explained the funding breakdown for the project. Green River City obtained a loan from the Water Quality board for $870,000; they also received a grant of $455,000 from the Water Quality Board. A loan from the USDA Rural Development in the amount of $584,000 and a grant from the USDA for $600,000.
Mayor Glen Johnson is happy with the successful sewer project, and the bottom line is: "It just smells a whole lot better," he said.