Urban Watershed Study in 7th Grade

Urban watersheds include areas where human populations are very high, such as towns and cities.  Most urban areas have municipal water systems for both drinking water and wastewater treatment. 7th graders spent a day visiting the Messerly Wastewater Treatment Facility and the Hicks Drinking Water Treatment Facility to learn how our community helps keep our precious water sources clean and healthy for all of us.
Evelyn R.
Urban Watershed
Humans have never followed the rules in their whole life. Especially with waste. There are people out there who knows that dumping plastic in the toilets or sinks can be very dangerous to their pipes and harmful to the water plants. People dump candy wrappers, plastic bags, toys, womens pads, plastic wraps and many more. In order to stop this, humans should just throw those harmful wastes away in the trash bin so it can be taken to the dump instead of being sent to the plant.They also toss trash in lakes and oceans, including oils too. People also put oils from cooking in the sink even though they are suppose to use a chemical solution to harden the oil and place it in again the trash bin. There are so many ways to make it helpful for our workers at the water plant to easily clean our water. We just need to understand that plastic and oils are harmful to the pipes that travel to the plant.
There are many steps in order to turn our water that we drink everyday into potable water. Potable means safe or drinkable. The water that travels to the water treatment center is waste water. Waste water is water that is used from every human to dump grit, trash, feces, oils, and perishable foods into the water source. This means waste water comes from every person’s house. In order to make that water drinkable or potable again the water goes through a series of multiple steps that involves four treatments. Many residents never care about how difficult it is to clean water. All they think is to just remove the waste and add a chemical to make water drinkable again.
The first process of treating waste water is to screen it. Screening means to remove large items like baby diapers, plastic bags, and things that can harm pipes. The plant uses special treatment to remove the grit, chunks of tiny waste, away from the water. This is only the first treatment so the next treatment involves tanks which removes human wastes. The waste in the tank slowly sinks down to the bottom of the tank and then the FOG rises up to the top of the water. This process is called the primary treatment. Once the waste is all at the bottom, a scraper is used to scrape the bottom and the waste is send to the side of the tank. Once the waste dries up, the water is then sent to the Secondary Treatment. This treatment involves microorganisms and hot pumped air. The microorganisms eat the tiny particles of waste which can not be seen by a human eye. The hot air is pumped from the bottom of the tank in order to keep the organisms alive.
Finally, the only step next is to filter the water. The water is now almost potable. The only remaining waste in the water is not visible once again. Like the Primary treatment, the water has to be scraped and searched through carefully so the water can be free of sludge. Once it is removed the plant adds homemade chlorine. This chlorine helps cleanse the water. After that the water is sent through a screen filter. A screen is like those windows screen that protects bugs and things that fly into your window. After the filter, the water is now finally sent to all of the residents who drink city water.
Henry A.
Urban Watershed Field Trip Essay
Where does the water go once it is flushed down the toilet or sink? After the water goes down the drain it is now wastewater. It goes to the Wastewater Treatment Plant closest to you. Wastewater is a term that is used to describe waste material that includes industrial liquid waste and sewage waste that is collected in towns and urban areas. Some things that sometimes are in wastewater are trash, grit, fats, oils, grease, our waste, and viruses.
Once the water is flushed down the sink it does not just turn back into clean water. First it has to go through many treatments to make the water clean again. The first treatment is called the preliminary treatment and it removes all the trash and grit. The next one is called the primary treatment and it removes all the not good microorganisms by using bacteria to eat them. The last one is called the secondary treatment and it removes all the bacteria by using chemicals to kill them.
Although people think bacteria is a very bad thing because it is harmful to our health, sometimes it can be very useful. Bacteria is used in water treatment to to kill the bad viruses and parasites in the water. Since bacteria is bad for us, the Wastewater Treatment Plant then has to get out all of the bacteria. The bacteria is treated with chemicals that kill the bacteria. After the bacteria is killed and all the viruses and pesticides are out the water then goes to a man made wetland. Finally it is then put back into the river.
Some things that the Wastewater Treatment Plant can not necessarily control it the pollution that is put into the urban watersheds. Some things that can contribute to pollution are pesticides, waste, oils, chemicals, and dirt. A way to stop waste from getting into the water is to not throw their trash out the window of the cars and put it in the trash can. A way to stop oils from getting into the water is to not dump oils and grease down the sink. A way to stop dirt from getting into the water is construction sites could put up fences that will stop the dirt from getting out of the construction site. A way to stop pesticides from getting into the water is to put a wetland between a farm or a yard and a body of water. If people can try to stop getting this pollution in the water the river will be much cleaner and the fish will not have as much of a chance to get a disease.
Overall, without the Wastewater Treatment Plant the river would be very dirty and the water that we drink would not be as clean. If people keep polluting the water then it will be much harder to keep it clean. To sum it all up, the Wastewater Treatment Plant is very important to our city and without it we might not be drinking healthy water.

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