Picture 27 empty Olympic-size swimming pools. Every day the Regional District’s Westside Wastewater Treatment Plant treats enough wastewater to fill them.
That’s about 10,000 cubic meters (10,000,000 litres) of water that’s flushed or flows down the drain into sewers from homes and businesses in West Kelowna, Peachland and the Westbank First Nation reserves #9 and #10. If you’re like most people, you never give a thought to where that water ends up.
To highlight the plant and its internationally-recognized Westbank biological treatment process, the Regional District’s produced a short video that anyone can watch to learn more about what happens to the water that flows into the plant 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
It also highlights the importance of not putting anything down your drain that can cause clogs in pipes and lead to potential sewer backups. Things like food waste and fats; personal hygiene products (diapers, wet wipes, pills and medicine etc.); household items like toys and paper towels and hazardous wastes or banned substances, should be properly disposed of and kept out of the wastewater system.
You can see the video and get more information about the plant, its process and annual reports for the facility located in West Kelowna, by visiting www.regionaldistrict.com/wastewater.
The first plant was commissioned in 1989 to service about 2,800 cubic meters of wastewater each day. Since then, the plant has undergone several upgrades and expansions over the years, the most recent in 2012. The present Gellatly Road facility is designed to treat 16,000 cubic meters per day within the three participating communities and ensuring best management practices and Provincial operating criteria are met before the treated effluent is put back into Okanagan Lake.