Sewage success for Qingpu

Three of the district's sewage plants have managed to lower the density of heavy metal in the sludge they handle by upgrading their facilities.

Qingpu District is into heavy metal — not music, but sludge.

Three of the district's sewage plants have managed to lower the density of heavy metal in the sludge — or waste water and excrement — they handle by upgrading their facilities. Meanwhile the government has closed some upstream polluters.

Huaxin Sewage Plant, Liantang Sewage Plant and Qingpu No. 2 Sewage Plant are among the 18 sewage plants in Shanghai that were listed as renovation targets by the Central Government’s Environmental Protection Inspection Team in April. Excess amount of heavy metal had been found in the sludge and water discharged by the plants.

“The problem of excess amount of heavy metal lies at the source,” Gu Siqing, deputy director of Qingpu District Environmental Protection Bureau told Jiefang Daily this week.

“A lot of people think it’s the sewage plant’s limited ability that caused the excess amount of heavy metal. However, inspections showed that sewage the plants received from the upstream already failed the discharge standard, which created a 'mission impossible' for the sewage plants.”

With the help of evidence provided by Huaxin Sewage Plant, Qingpu District’s Huaxin Town government listed 12 heavy polluting companies as renovation targets, most of which were involved in painting, electroplating and stainless steel cleaning businesses.

By September 5, nine of the 12 companies had been closed while the remaining three were ordered to upgrade their pollutant dealing facilities before being allowed to start operating again.

The measures helped to ease Huaxin Sewage Plant’s burden in dealing with heavy metal in the sewage it received. By July, Huaxin, together with Liantang and Qingpu No. 2 sewage plants, managed to lower the density of heavy metal in their sludge to meet environmental standards.

Similar measures had been taken after the Qingpu District government collected evidence from Xujing Sewage Plant, and suspended the operation of heavy polluting companies including wiring production manufacture Shanghai Xingke Jinpeng Company and Shanghai Zhanhua Electronic Company.

In Shanghai Luyan Sewage Plant, facilities will be upgraded by the end of this year, increasing its daily sewage dealing capacity to 51,000 tons.

The local government will also look for heavy polluters from the plant’s upstream companies, as the plant has long complained about excess amount of nickel in the sewage it receives.

According to Qingpu District Environmental Protection Bureau, after making sure the sludge produced by the plants have met the heavy metal standard, some of the sludge will be transported to Qingpu composting plant and used as landscaping fertilization. The rest will be dehydrated and transported to landfills.

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