Oregon Wastewater Treatment Plant First in the United States to Recycle Nutrients Into ‘Green’ Commercial Fertilizer


UBC technology at Oregon Treatment Plan_Official Opening_2009

Nutrient recovery technology was developed at the University of British Columbia under the leadership of Dr. Don Mavinic

PORTLAND, OR and VANCOUVER, BC — News Release on June 10, 2009— Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski joined Robert F. Kennedy Jr. at the opening of the first commercial facility in the United States to incorporate innovative new technology that recovers phosphorus and other nutrients from wastewater and recycles them into environmentally-safe premium-quality commercial fertilizer.

The new technology is located in suburban Portland at Clean Water Services’ Durham Advanced Wastewater Treatment Facility (Tigard, Oregon). The facility serves more than 500,000 customers in urban Washington County west of Portland.

“This technology will save our ratepayers money by extracting nutrients which would otherwise clog our pipes and reduce our plant’s treatment capacity, while also creating a unique and environmentally safe commercial fertilizer product,” said Bill Gaffi, General Manager at Clean Water Services.  “We anticipate that the $2.5 million capital cost of incorporating this technology will be recovered within five years from a combination of Crystal Green revenues and operational cost savings of up to $500,000 per year.”

To Learn More:

To download a news release, click on Oregon Treatment Plant First in USA to Recycle Nutrients into ‘Green’ Commerical Fertilizer.

University of British Columbia Connection

LWMP reference panel - don mavinic  and his magic crystals (200p)“To demonstrate the potential for sustainable wastewater treatment solutions, we at UBC have developed the technology to capture phosphorus and ammonia from high concentration streams and recycle them into environmentally safe fertilizer,” explains Dr. Don Mavinic.

“The UBC research effort has been all about producing a sustainable and marketable fertilizer; and we have succeeded! We have demonstrated that we can produce a slow-release and non-burning fertilizer from sewage.”

“It has taken almost 10 years for my research team to realize this dream – a full scale, sustainable  nutrient recovery system in place – I never imagined for a moment, when we started this research program, that we would  ever achieve this milestone in environmental engineering circles – on June 10, 2009, I was in awe, very humbled and very proud of what my team had accomplished,” stated Don Mavinic as he reflected on the significance of what the Oregon treatment plant opening meant to him.

To Learn More:

To learn more about the work of Dr. Mavinic and his team of researchers, click on Nutrient Recovery: Creating Value from Waste at Metro Vancouver’s Lulu Island Sewage Treatment Plant.