Wastewater stations to get B188m

Wastewater stations to get B188m

PATTAYA: Pattaya City Council has approved a budget of 188 million baht to improve the condition of its six wastewater treatment stations that have fallen into disrepair after nearly 20 years of operations.

The city's wastewater treatment system cost an estimated 1.8 billion baht in 2000. It was designed to handle 65,000 cubic metres per day, said Phatthana Bunsawat, deputy mayor of Pattaya.

After more than 17 years of service, about 38% of all the equipment and machines were found to be between 40% and 50% worn out, which requires prompt repair and maintenance to guarantee they remain effective, he said.

After treatment, the water is normally released into the sea.

The treatment system covers 36 square kilometres, or 68% of Pattaya, he said.

When it was built, it came with a plan to raise its treatment capacity to 85,000 cu/m a day within 10 years, and to 130,000 cu/m another decade later, said Chakhon Kanchanawatta, deputy president of the Pattaya Council.

But not only was the expansion plan not implemented, the existing equipment and machines were also not properly maintained, he said during the council's meeting.

The council eventually approved the move.

At present, the system lacks enough capacity to cope with the city's volume of wastewater, said Thanet Suphonsahatrangsi, a member of the city council.

The volume of wastewater in Pattaya has risen to more than 70,000 cu/m a day, while the city's wastewater system can only deal with at most 65,000 cu/m, he said.

This recorded volume of wastewater seems unrealistic and needs to be verified, he said.

The Provincial Waterworks Authority said Pattaya uses more than 200,000 cu/m of water a day. As such, it's highly unlikely there was only 70,000 cu/m of wastewater a day in the city, he said.

Besides, he said, there is no meter to measure the water quality before it is released into the sea after treatment, which is blamed for the muddy and smelly water often seen dumped into the sea.

Anuwat Thongkham, acting director of Pattaya City's engineering and sanitation office, said the budget will focus on repairing and maintaining the system, not expanding its capacity.

A meter will be installed soon.

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