Pilot study provides promise for water treatment

Published: Thursday, July 17, 2014 at 09:40 AM.

Clarity is arriving in the search for answers to chronic issues with water in Port St. Joe.

During Tuesday’s regular bi-monthly meeting of the City Commission an engineer from Florida Rural Water Association presented findings from a pilot study that revealed promise in a treatment option that could reduce costs and address ongoing discoloration issues.

The pilot study was performed by FRWA, a non-profit trade association for water and wastewater utilities, using hydrated lime, a liquid form of lime, as part of the treatment protocol.

The study was approved by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.

The results of the study showed using lime to replace caustic soda would cut costs by roughly two-thirds, create water more easily treated for consumption and cause no damage to the microfiltration system that is the heart of the city’s four-year-old water plant.

“It is effective, it will work and we are recommending lime,” said Sterling Carroll with FRWA.

Lime is typically used in water systems using well water and Carroll said the lime softening agent used for years in Port St. Joe was likely the culprit in ongoing discoloration issues since the new plant opened.

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