News Briefs: Minnesota WWTP Team Finds Diamond Ring

Also in this week's water and wastewater news, a San Francisco company is recycling wastewater from high-rise buildings

News Briefs: Minnesota WWTP Team Finds Diamond Ring

A team at the Metro Wastewater Treatment Plant in Rogers, Minnesota, recently stumbled upon a diamond ring while clearing debris from a filter. The ring appears to have been on an extensive journey, as the band is now worn and pitted, but the diamond remains sparkling, according to plant maintenance manager John Tierney.

Now the team is looking for the ring’s owner, according to MPR News.

San Francisco Company Recycling Wastewater From High-Rise Buildings

Aaron Tartakovsky, co-founder and CEO of Epic Cleantec, has a vision for the future of recycled water, which is already being realized in downtown San Francisco. The company is repurposing wastewater from high-rise buildings and turning it into clean water, high-quality soil amendments, and renewable energy.

Epic Cleantec employs a range of innovative technologies to achieve this transformation. The system's control center monitors everything from energy savings to wastewater recovery. Ryan Pully, director of water reuse operations, explains that the water entering the system is ultimately purified to near-drinking quality, although it remains non-potable due to regulations.

The company is, however, brewing recycled water beer and taking it to water forums and trade shows around the world, according to ABC7 News. "We make beer out of recycled water, because we're trying to change the conversation. We're not just trying to introduce new technologies. We're actually fundamentally trying to help people rethink how our communities handle water," Tartakovsky told the news organization.

EPA Announces Loan to Limit Water Shortages in San Diego County

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently announced a $170 million Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act loan to Poseidon Resources in San Diego County, California, to support its Carlsbad Desalination Plant Intake Modification and Wetlands Project, which will help provide sustainable access to drinking water and protect local coastal wetlands.

“Diversifying and stretching precious water supplies is essential in the water scarce West,” says EPA Assistant Administrator for Water Radhika Fox. “Our WIFIA loan to Poseidon Resources in San Diego County will be used for both upgrading the drinking water desalination plant to help address water shortages, stretch precious water supplies, and protect critical marine habitats in the San Diego Bay.”

The Carlsbad Desalination Plant provides approximately 10% of the San Diego County region’s water supply. The plant was opened in 2015 as a public-private partnership with Poseidon Resources and the San Diego County Water Authority and currently requires significant upgrades to add a new intake facility to comply with the State of California’s ocean water intake regulations and ensure the plant’s continued operation.

The $170 million WIFIA loan will also support the restoration of approximately 125 acres of coastal wetlands on the San Diego Bay to provide habitat for native plants and wildlife, including endangered species, migratory seabirds, and shorebirds.


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