• Convenor to lobby for a consistent discharge consent standard and promotion of PTP group

WPL Technical Director, Andrew Baird, is to remain as Convenor of the British Water Package Treatment Plant (PTP) group for a second year. Baird has started to lobby for consistent discharge standards to be applied UK wide and for the governing bodies to appreciate that some standards being imposed are not achievable using EN12566-3 accredited treatment plants.

The PTP aims to bring together experts from the water industry in order to set standards and improve guidelines in the small package treatment plant industry. Baird has 27 years of experience within the water industry and is the regulatory expert for WPL, which specialises in custom-made packaged treatment plants.

Focus Group Objectives

For his second year as convenor, Baird states, “We intend to advise on discharge consent standards across England, Scotland and Wales; setting a criteria for determining a consistent quality of effluent discharged. Preliminary meetings are in place with the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) for November 2016 and the Environmental Agency (EA) for January 2017, to discuss this matter further.”

He will also carry out a full review of the present British Water Flows and Loads document. Baird says, “The purpose of this review is to assess each individual loading rate to more realistically reflect water consumption and wastewater generation. This will take between 12-18 months to complete.”

Paul Usher, Vice Convenor of the PTP comments, “Such objectives are not short-term and require a sustained and consistent approach. It makes sense for Andrew to stay as convenor for 2 years because it gives a more realistic timeframe to see on-going work through, work that can then be picked up more easily by the vice-convenor having deputised for the same period.”

PTP Group Promotion

The PTP currently focuses on plants serving less than 50 population equivalent, which have their own particular regulatory system under European Law. Baird aims to promote the PTP within British Water, as well as involve manufacturers, installers and service companies who work on larger commercial plants of up to 1000 population equivalent. This can be achieved internally within British Water by promoting the group as being more encompassing and inclusive of other markets and market sectors.

For further promotion, an educational road show has been proposed for both the North and South of England for 2017. Usher says, “The PTP would like to represent the views and showcase the technical skills and very practical experience of its manufacturing, installation and maintenance members to the regulators.

Usher continues, “We are also keen to share knowledge with more recently recognised stakeholders such as Local Authority and private Building Control, Local Planning Authorities, professional bodies such as the Chartered Institute of Building and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, in order to encourage higher and more reliable standards of off-mains wastewater treatment.”

Baird will lead the next meeting of the PTP on January 24th 2017.