Company News Jan 11, 2022 6:05 PM
One of the major commitments of the Colombian capital’s water company, Empresa de Acueducto y Alcantarillado de Bogotá (EAAB), to achieve sustainable modernization is the implementation of a circular economy model.
Company representatives explained that all water treatment plants, both potable and wastewater, generate sludge that can be reused through different treatments, El Tiempo reported.
The sludge, generated by the treatment of drinking water, contains nutrients that can be used for different purposes. The company is working to guarantee that this sludge is not only sent to landfill or disposed of in sedimentation ponds, instead it will be collected, treated and used.
El Dorado plant, which has been in operation for 20 years and produces 500 liters of water per second, is an example of this. With the treatment of this sludge, the firm is currently recirculating about 800 cubic meters per day, which is equivalent to the amount of water consumed by about 8,000 people per day.
To treat the wastewater from the operational and administrative buildings at this plant, the company set up a wastewater treatment plant and with this treated water they also manage to recirculate the liquid, getting zero discharges.
EAAB is building a much larger recirculation system at the Tibitoc drinking water treatment plant, to leverage the water contained in the sludge resulting from the treatment.
The Aqueduct expects to achieve the recirculation of 800 liters per second in Tibitoc.
These initiatives are compiled in the Sludge Management Plan, the 10-year planning instrument to guide circular economy actions for sludge.
Another way of achieving the circular economy from Acueducto de Bogotá has to do with the production of clean energy.
The company has three small hydroelectric plants implemented in three key points (Santa Ana, Suba and Usaquén) in which the flow and pressure of the water, which comes from Chingaza, is used to produce electricity.
“In this way, a double use is made of the water resource that we transport through the Aqueduct,” EAAB said.