The UK’s largest dog welfare charity, Dogs Trust has selected an enhanced effluent treatment technology to meet stringent regulations at its rehoming centre in Northern Ireland.

A site expansion and tightening environmental consents has led Dogs Trust to upgrade the onsite wastewater treatment plant at its centre in Ballymena, Country Antrim.  Animal waste is categorised as controlled waste, with treatment governed by more stringent regulations than domestic waste.

The system is being delivered by specialist WPL, a WCS Environmental Engineering (WCSEE) company.

Working alongside the charity’s project managers Soma Services, WCSEE designed and manufactured a modular HiPAF® (high performance aerated filter) treatment plant, with a robust aerobic digestion system (RADS), to replace the existing plant. In addition, a new sand filter will provide a level of tertiary treatment.

The solution has been designed to meet a Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) discharge consent of 10:15:10mg/l for ammonia and suspended solids and 10mg/L biological oxygen demand (BOD).

The HiPAF is most appropriate for commercial and domestic applications where the site is not connected to mains drainage and is well suited to complex requirements, such as the treatment of animal waste. RADS is a cost efficient, low maintenance sludge treatment system which runs alongside the biological plant.

The introduction of the RADS process will not only ensure optimum performance but will provide significant savings in tankering costs.

The HiPAF and RADS have been successfully installed at many animal centres such as kennels, catteries and stables. On completion of the latest installation at Ballymena, a total of nine WCSEE systems will be in operation at Dogs Trust sites around the UK.

WCSEE and Soma Services Dogs Trust site at Ilfracombe

Technical manager Dominic Hamblin said: “We are proud to be supplying our ninth specialist treatment systems to Dogs Trust’s Ballymena site, to ensure compliance with stringent environmental standards.

“The waste generated by this type of establishment is very difficult to treat and for those locations not connected to mains drainage, reliable onsite treatment systems are critical if environmental permit conditions are to be maintained.  It is a testament to the combined process expertise of WCSEE and project partner Soma Services that we have again been selected by Dogs Trust to deliver a robust solution.”

Pete Croft, Dogs Trust building surveyor, said: “It is important to Dog Trust that all our sites are operated as efficiently as possible and in compliance with the relevant environmental standards. This is particularly challenging where centres are expanding.

“From our previous wastewater treatment upgrades, we know the introduction of the RADS system will make a significant difference to the amount of desludging required as part of the treatment process and will reduce associated costs as a result. We are very happy with the work that Soma Services and WCSEE have done for us over the years and are pleased to be working with them once again on this important project in Ballymena.”

Rob Hunt, Soma Services managing director, said: “Soma Services are proud to have worked with Dogs Trust since 2006 and, in close association with equipment suppliers WCSEE, have provided innovative cost-effective turnkey solutions to their challenging wastewater treatment needs. Over 20 years’ experience of treatment plant installation and maintenance enables our clients’ requirements to be met in a wide range of situations.”

The technology will be installed by Soma Services and the project is expected to be delivered by summer 2022.

WPL and Atana are now a part of WCS Environmental Engineering

WCS Environmental Engineering is a part of the WCS Group, which has the in-house skills and expertise in place to deliver full turnkey solutions from influent to effluent, with the capability to close the loop with water reuse.