Onsite Wastewater System Upgrade: Nanaimo Regional Airport

Onsite Wastewater System Upgrade: Nanaimo Regional Airport

The Nanaimo Airport Commission (NAC) operates the Nanaimo Regional Airport. They have their own wastewater treatment and disposal on-site. NAC determined the wastewater system was in need of improvements. Odour concerns and increasing operational demands could impact regulatory compliance. A rapid increase in passenger demand in recent years also warranted an analysis of the capacity of the system. MSR Solutions reviewed the existing treatment system. We proposed upgrades to resolve the current issues and also improve capacity to meet future demands.

Wastewater Issues and Improvements

The existing wastewater treatment system at the Nanaimo Regional Airport had solids loading and equipment issues. These contributed to excessive maintenance costs and nuisance odours. In addition, increased passenger demands created a need for modifications to the wastewater system. These improvements increased capacity and reliability. MSR Solutions proposed the following improvements:

  • Reroute all collection piping directly into the existing lift station
  • Extend the gravity main from the new terminal building to the existing lift station
  • Replace the solids handling pumps in the existing lift station with grinder pumps
  • Install a 5,100 imp gal (23,100 L) Dan’s Precast equalization tank
  • Relocate the MicroFAST media to a new treatment location. In addition, we proposed installation of timer controlled pumps inside the new tanks to transfer sludge to an aerobic digestion tank.
  • Install a 3,560 gal (16,100 L) Dan’s Precast septic tank with air pumps and diffusers for aerobic sludge digestion.
  • Decommission the existing septic and MicroFAST tanks

Operation Complete

Information about the repairs and improved capacity of the current system went to The Ministry of the Environment. The wastewater system upgrade allows the airport to handle peak flow until 2028 without exceeding the maximum allowable discharge under the Registration. It also allows airport operations under its current Registration until flows become too great and they require additional capacity. The Ministry of the Environment received the filing in August. Construction was subsequently completed this fall with MSR provided field inspection. In February, MSR provided operator training and review of the O&M manual.

For other wastewater system upgrades we’ve been involved with, see our Wastewater Treatment Service page.

Grey Water Treatment: Croftonbrook Phase 2

Grey Water Treatment: Croftonbrook Phase 2

Phase 2 of the Croftonbook project is now underway. MSR Solutions Inc. is currently providing a review of the proposed grey water treatment and reuse system for Phase 2 of the Croftonbrook facilities on Salt Spring Island. They are also looking at capturing rainwater as an alternative water supply.

Grey Water and Water Conservation

Potable water comes from an onsite well. In order to conserve water, it has been proposed to use recycled grey water and captured rainwater to supply toilets in the new living units.

About Croftonbrook

Island Women Against Violence (IWAV) owns and operates Croftonbrook. It provides 20 units of subsidized rental housing for seniors and people with disabilities.  In response to the serious housing shortage in the community, IWAV proposed a 2-phase development to add 54 new rental units.

This is mixed model housing, so rentals will be available to individuals, couples and small families with low to moderate incomes.  Some of the units will be provided for people who are experiencing homelessness.

Croftonbrook provides independent supportive living for seniors and people with disabilities. The Phase 2 development involves the construction of a new two-story building. It will have twenty-two, one bedroom living units, with laundry facilities on each floor.

The Croftonbrook development has received capital funding through the CRD Regional Housing First Program. This is a partnership with CRD, BC Housing and Island Health.  The Salt Spring Island Foundation has also provided a grant to support the water system design.

For more information on projects and services, please visit our Services Page.

Onsite Sewage System: Millstream Industrial Park

Onsite Sewage System: Millstream Industrial Park

Millstream Industrial Park hired MSR Solutions Inc. (MSRS) to provide engineering services pertaining to the onsite wastewater treatment and disposal system for 790 Industrial Way. Daily flows for the facility will be less than 22,700 L/d (5,000 Imp gpd). The design and operation of the facility is governed by the Sewerage System Regulation (SSR) under a filing with Island Health.  Filed on April 29, 2020

New Onsite Sewage System

Unit 790 Industrial Way at Millstream Industrial Park requires a new onsite sewage system to replace the existing system. It services a 2-bedroom residence and an office space. A new treatment system consists of a Dan’s Precast 7728 L (1700 Imp Gal) 2-chamber septic tank. This is followed by a Dan’s Precast 2722 L (600 Imp gal) dosing chamber with duplex effluent pumps.

This will discharge to a distribution box, which will provide gravity dosing to three laterals. Within the disposal field, Eljen GSF modules and specified C33 sand are used to upgrade the effluent to Type 2 quality at the point of application.  Site report conducted on May 30, 2020.

For more information about MSR Solutions Inc. services, please visit our Services Page.

Clayoquot Wilderness Resort Update

Clayoquot Wilderness Resort Update

Below is an update on Clayoquot Resort sewage and water repairs.

The wastewater system/water treatment servicing the guest accommodation area was filed under the Sewerage System Regulation (SSR) in in 2011. The treatment system was assessed by MSR Solutions Inc., in May 2018. Most of the deficiencies identified have since been repaired. The assessment identified the existing disposal field had failed due to organic overloading.

Attempts to rehabilitate the field were unsuccessful, so a new force main was installed, and new infiltration basins were built close to the horse barn for effluent disposal. An amendment to the filing was submitted by MSR to document the replacement disposal area. The most recent assessment in October 2019 identified a few operation and maintenance recommendations to improve effluent quality and the longevity of the new infiltration basins. The investigation also identified a potential shortcoming of the original collection system that may partially explain the historically poor effluent quality. If effluent quality targets are not attainable during the 2020 season, despite appropriate routine monitoring and operation as outlined in the operating manual, installation of additional primary treatment (septic tanks) will substantially improve treatment system performance.

New Equipment Installed

New wastewater treatment and disposal systems were installed in 2019 to service the staff accommodation area. The new works have been filed by MSR under the SSR, and consist of primary sedimentation, aerobic treatment, secondary sedimentation with effluent filtration, and dispersal via rapid infiltration basins.

Clayoquot Wilderness Resort (CWR), located at the head of Bedwell Sound near Tofino, British Columbia, is serviced by one water system and two wastewater systems. Works have been implemented over the past 12 months to improve the performance and safety of these three utilities and bring them into compliance with the applicable provincial legislation.

Improvements for Safe Drinking Water

The water source for the resort is a single shallow well, which draws from an aquifer directly connected to the nearby Bedwell River. The Water Sustainability Act (WSA) and Drinking Water Protection Act (DWPA) set out standards for the construction and operation of wells and drinking water systems respectively.

Wellhead improvements, including installation of a well cap and surface grading, have been implemented to meet the standards of the WSA. The water source has been determined to be Groundwater Under Direct Influence (GWUDI) of surface water, which requires a treatment system that meets the Vancouver Island Health Authority’s (VIHA) “43210” policy. At CWR, this level of treatment is being attained by using 1-micron absolute filtration, UV disinfection, and chlorination.

Other Improvements

Other improvements to the water system include the installation of 36 m3 of treated water storage, well pump replacement, and reparation of several major leaks in the distribution system. An inspection was conducted in October. There are a few minor tasks to be completed on site prior to making application to VIHA to issue the drinking water system Operating Permit.

The work is still ongoing.  See our services page or search our site for more information on what MSR Solutions can do for your project.

Small Water Purveyor Solutions

Small Water Purveyor Solutions

The Regional District of Nanaimo held their annual Water Purveyor Working Group (WPWG) workshop on Thursday January 30, 2020. MSR’s Todd Adamsson and Karl WIlliaume were on hand to give a presentation on leak detection/water theft and grant opportunities.

The WPWG aims to assist small water purveyors by providing networking and educational opportunities. As MSR Solutions specializes in small water systems, having Todd and Karl there was a good fit.

MSR Solutions currently supplies their clients with the following: source water assessment and protection, treatment and distribution design, construction coordination and oversight, and ongoing operations consultation. We also offer complimentary services for developments, including onsite sewage treatment, storm water management and civil design.

Todd Adamsson and Karl Williaume

MSR’s Todd Adamsson has a pragmatic approach to water system design by installing, operating and troubleshooting a wide variety of systems drawing from the full gamut of sources including rainwater, seawater, groundwater and surface water. In addition to new builds and upgrades, his MSR clients rely on his chemical engineering expertise to find practical solutions to maintain high water quality as source characteristics change, demand increases, and equipment ages.

Fellow presenter, was Karl Williaume, a professional engineer with a decade of experience designing water and wastewater infrastructure in western Canada. He takes pride in bringing a hands-on, innovative approach to the design process, providing value to clients with practical, optimized solutions. He enjoys a healthy mix of field work and office work, and regularly seeks input from contractors and operators to keep his designs grounded in the practical realities of system operation.

The MSR Solutions, solution

MSR Solutions and their staff are available to assist with your questions and concerns. We’d be happy to assist you with your small water purveyor solutions. MSR is also represented on the WEF Small Communities Committee, as well as the BCWWA, where Mike Seymour, owner of MSR, is President. See our Services page for more in depth information on what MSR can do for you.

Septic Awareness Week

Septic Awareness Week

The WCOWMA Onsite Wastewater Management of BC (WCOWMA-BC) reminds all of you that September 16 to 20, 2019 is Septic Awareness Week.

Here is an outline at what to do and what not to do if you have a septic system.

Septic Dos

  • Have a ROWP maintenance provider confirm or develop a maintenance plan specific to your septic system that includes at minimum an annual assessment. This maintenance plan should include as constructed drawings.
  • Have your tank pumped out as recommended by your Maintenance Provider.
  • Have your effluent filter cleaned as needed, approximately every 6 months.
  • Remove sludge in spring rather than fall to avoid loading the tank with undigested solids during cold months.
  • Keep your septic tank cover accessible for inspections and pumping. Install risers if necessary and always keep the tank lid secure.
  • Package treatment plants are maintained according to the manufacturer’s specifications.
  • Know the location of your septic tank or package treatment plant and soils treatment components.
  • Be aware there are required setbacks for the installation of underground sprinklers in the vicinity of septic systems.
  • Watch for any ground settlement that might direct water onto the soils treatment components.
  • Keep the area around the septic tank and dispersal area grassed to promote evaporation and avoid erosion.

Septic Don’ts

  • Do not enter or access a septic tank.
  • Do not use septic tank additives.
  • Do not disinfect, scrub and wash the tank.
  • Do not allow vehicles to drive over, or park on, any septic system components.
  • Do not use a septic field as pens or pastures for animals.
  • Do not plant any trees or shrubs on or near the bed or tanks; their roots can clog pipes.
  • Do not drain downspouts, sump pumps, etc. into the septic system.
  • Do not alter drainage features without consideration for impacts to the dispersal field.
  • Do not build over any septic or soils component or cover it with a hard surface such as asphalt, brick or patio stones.
  • Do not excessively water the lawn over the soils treatment component area.

There’s more great information on the WCOWMA -BC site for Septic Awareness Week.

If you live in the following regions, please be aware they also have public education programs available to homeowners with septic systems. See their websites or contact them directly for more information.

Capital Regional District Septic Savvy

Regional District of Nanaimo SepticSmart

Comox Valley Regional District Septic

Columbia Shuswap Regional District Septic Smart

For more information on onsite sewage disposal and wastewater treatment, see our services page. We also have a blog post on onsite sewage disposal.