TRURO - New equipment is being brought in to help deal with the noxious odours emanating from the wastewater treatment plant in Lower Truro.
"In the last little while the odours seem to be back, or there was a period there at least where they were back, as strong as ever," Colchester County Deputy Mayor Bill Masters said, to public works director Michelle Newell, during the last committee meeting of Colchester County council.
"If we are going to get into another routine hot summer with odours we are going to have issues (with residents' complaints)," he said. "Will this help with that situation?" Masters added of the new equipment.
"Ultimately this will resolve the situation," Newell said, of new centrifuge dewatering equipment designed to handle additional solids at the wastewater treatment facility.
Because of upgrades in recent years to the facility it is generating a higher volume of solids. There are also high-strength industrial effluents being released into the system, which when combined with low oxygen conditions and warm weather that result in "unpleasant odours at the plant and in the surrounding areas," a staff report said.
Council had earlier earmarked $2.6 million in this year's budget to deal with the issue.
So far, $58,000 has been spent on a detailed design of the required equipment and the county is in the process of purchasing the equipment from Noxon North America at a cost of $289,654.
Construction of that system is expected to begin in September but in the interim, Newell told council a mobile unit is being brought in to help deal with the odour issues. That equipment is expected to be operating in about a week's time.
"If the system works as it is supposed to there should be an improvement," Newell said, of the temporary equipment.
Residents had been assured in the past that the odour issue was being dealt with and while they have generally been "patient" with the municipality, but that can't be expected to continue if the stench isn't eliminated, Coun. Doug MacInnes suggested.
"We definitely have to do something to get this corrected," he said.
Newell said the county will also be working with the Town of Truro to begin precise monitoring of the types and volumes of industrial wastes that are being released into the sewer system in an effort to also reduce the odours.