City Council supports annual municipal water pollution documents

Published: Mar. 28, 2023 at 10:22 PM CDT
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - The Lake Charles City Council voted 6-0 to support the annual Municipal Water Pollution Prevention documents that are sent to the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality.

“We have three large wastewater plants that service the City of Lake Charles,” said City of Lake Charles Utilities Manager Kevin Heise. “We have a plant that is in the Northern part of the city, we have plant BC, which is the central part of the city, and plant D which services kind of the Southern portion of the city.”

Plants are graded on the amount of flows that come into the plant, construction age of the plants, and environmental compliance.

“There’s not a recovery portion of this, but you know an A and two B’s in comparison is great for a community that’s recovering, two plants that are recovering from certainly two hurricanes and those repairs, so we feel very good about the scores,” said Heise.

The plants are scored on 560 points. The lower the score, the better.

“For example, our plant D, which was our best score, out of 560 possible bad points, we received 55,” said Heise. “So that’s a little over a 90 percentile, so we feel like that’s a that’s an A.”

The wastewater plants treat the wastewater to the proper standards and then release the water back to the city.

Anything that goes down your drain needs to be biodegradable.

“Toilets are not trash cans, so we just want everything that needs to go into the wastewater system needs to be something as biodegradable that our plants can manage,” said Heise.

Wipes may be flushable, but they are not biodegradable.

“Flushable wipes are a no, when it comes to operations because they do not break down, they actually have to get manually removed by either equipment or, a person,” said Heise.

Every day a team of people must manually remove flushable wipes from the pumps.

“Everyday we have staff that have to go out into our collection system and what we call the de-ragging of the pumps so that they pump efficiently to the wastewater plants and then we have equipment in the plants that is in constant use removing these,” said Heise.