Click on “Download PDF” for the PDF version or on the title for the HTML version.

If you are not an ASABE member or if your employer has not arranged for access to the full-text, Click here for options.

Land-Based Wastewater Reuse for TMDL Compliance

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Pp. 448-448 in Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Environmental Regulations: Proceedings of the March 11-13, 2002 Conference, (Fort Worth, Texas, USA)  701P0102.(doi:10.13031/2013.7594)
Authors:   Daniel J. Burgard, Steel Maloney, Jacob L. LaRue,
Keywords:   Land Application, Reuse, Municipal Wastewater, Industrial wastewater, Tertiary Treatment, Point Source Reduction

One important aspect of watershed management to maintain surface water quality includes minimizing the introduction of point source pollution where possible. Surface water discharges of wastewater from municipal and industrial point sources contribute significantly toward filling surface water contaminant load capacity. In surface waters where Total Maximum Daily Loading limits are routinely being met or exceeded, additional (tertiary) treatment or discharge alternatives must be found to maintain water quality. Properly designed and operated, land application of municipal and industrial wastewater or electrical power plant cooling tower blowdown water can be a cost-effective alternative to surface water discharge or expensive tertiary treatment. Land application uses irrigation to apply the wastewater or cooling water as a supplemental water and nutrient source to grow crops. Warm temperatures that are detrimental to fish can enhance crop growth. Phosphorus can be taken up as a nutrient by the crop or immobilized in the soil. Land application can be used only during periods of low surface water flow or year-round to enhance TMDL compliance. Crops grown with the water can be harvested and sold as a return on system operating costs. As an added benefit, energy consuming treatment systems can be reduced or eliminated by the treatment and reuse provided by soil-crop systems. This paper will discuss the options available for using land application to reduce point source discharges to meet TMDL requirements. System operational needs and performance as well as advantages and disadvantages will be reviewed. Case study examples will be explored. Under the right conditions, land application reuse can provide a low-cost, energy efficient sustainable means for meeting TMDL requirements.

(Download PDF)    (Export to EndNotes)