Sunday, July 21, 2024
Environmental Management

Why Sewage treatment plant is your best option

Whether you’re at Land, Swamp barge drilling Rig and a campsite. You are starting an eco-friendly campsite in the middle of nowhere, there’s always the need to sort out your septic system. Affordable, sewage treatment plants may be your only option if you plan to discharge your wastewater into a stream or ditch so that it has minimal negative impact on the environment.

What’s the difference between septic tank and a sewage treatment plant?

Understanding the basic differences between the options available is the first step to getting just what you need.

Septic Tanks

Septic tanks are multi-chambered and are able to treat and discharge the liquid part of the sewage. Waste enters the first tank where gravity separates the liquids from the solids. The liquid effluent flows out of the tank and discharges underground, where it is cleaned as it percolates through the soil. The solids sink to the bottom, where some of the ‘sludge’ is broken down by natural bacteria, but the rest will need to be taken away by lorry. Septic Tank is most suitable for a single house or a small development. Your ground condition should be porous enough to allow the liquid effluent to discharge.

Septic Tank

Advantages: Relatively low installation and running costs as they only require emptying (otherwise known as ‘de-sludging’) once or twice a year.

Disadvantages: Only suitable if your ground is porous enough to allow the waste to percolate through.

Maintenance: Breaking down the waste relies on natural bacteria, which can be killed off by the bleach or harsh chemicals in today’s wastewater. Septic tank treatments can help keep the bacteria healthy – and your septic tanks running costs low.

Sewage Treatment Plants

There are domestic units as well as large-scale, commercial units. They all work in the same way. Sewage treatment plant is most suitable foreverything from single domestic dwellings right up to large developments. The only option if you want to discharge your treated waste to a ditch or stream.

Advantages: Affordable, clean and sewage treated to higher standard so that it has minimal negative impact on the environment.

Disadvantages: Requires an electricity supply and regular maintenance and, while the volume of solid matter is greatly reduced, it’ll still need pumping into a lorry for disposal.

Maintenance: With more moving parts than septic tanks or cesspools, sewage treatments are more prone to wear and tear, so will require regular maintenance.

Septic tanks vs sewage treatment plants: Which one is better?

Sewage treatment plants are fast becoming the preferred option. The following may help if you’re torn between getting a septic tank and a sewage treatment plant.

Environmental friendly

The sewage treatment plant is environmentally friendly. Septic tanks make a highly polluting effluent high in ammonia which cannot be discharged into a watercourse. Instead, it can only be discharged to a soak away for further treatment of the pollutants by the natural aerobic soil bacteria.

A sewage treatment plant, however, produces a clean, non-polluting effluent. In fact, as it leaves the final waste chamber to be discharged, the effluent can be as much as 95% clean, posing no threat to the environment.


Most sewage treatment plants do require a power source because they work by pumping in compressed air or by rotating discs. However, you don’t normally need a very large supply – sometimes just the amount of power it takes to run a 60 watt light bulb. But where will you get this power if you’re off-grid? It normally comes from the main circuit board in your house or a generator.


Septic tanks have previously been a great option because they’re incredibly low maintenance – they only need to be emptied once or twice a year and can last for over 20 years.

Sewage treatment plants may require a little more upkeep as they have more moving parts, yet they produce such little sludge that they may need emptying even less frequently (although it’s recommended that you do de-sludge once a year to make sure no solids can build up and damage the treatment chamber).

How do sewage treatment plants work?

The job of a sewage treatment plant is very simple. It cleans all the wastewater a building produces (think showers, baths, toilets, dishwashers and sinks) so that it can then be discharged safely into a river or stream.  

All sewage treatment plants work in similar ways. First, the wastewater flows into the primary chamber, where gravity separates any solids from the liquid. The solids sink to the bottom to form what’s known as a sludge which will be evacuated at a later date.

The remaining liquid flows into the second chamber for treatment. In this biological zone, compressed air is pumped in, and this added oxygen encourages the naturally occurring aerobic bacteria to flourish. Some sewage treatment plants also have rotating discs which give the bacteria a larger surface area to grow on.

At this point, the treated effluent goes into the final part of the tank – a calm area that allows the bacteria to settle at the bottom (for removal back into the first tank) while the clean liquid can flow out either to a watercourse (subject to Environment Agency consent) or to a ground soakaway field or drainage mound.

Do sewage treatment plants still need emptying?

Yes, just as with a septic tank, the sludge still needs emptying by tanker because the job of the sewage treatment plant is really just to clean the water. Most manufacturers will recommend you empty them once a year to keep sludge from building up – and remember that some low-budget options may need emptying more frequently than this.

Where can I discharge the wastewater?

Your wastewater can either be discharged to a watercourse like a river or stream, or to a soak away treatment system such as a drainage mound. If you’re planning on discharging to water, your effluent needs to abide by certain rules laid down by the Environment Agency.

Talk to us for your upcoming sewage treatment plant project

Geodata Evaluation & Drilling LTD. provide sewage treatment plant and maintenance services. Contact us at Phone: +234 8037055441

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