Sunday, January 9, 2022

Cleaner wastewater for Lake George

wastewater treatment

The village of Lake George is days away from turning on its new wastewater treatment plant – a major overhaul years in the making.

I visited the new facility (located in the same place as the old plant) last week and got a tour from plant operator Tim Shudt, who is nearing 10 years in the position. Construction is basically complete, but they are still working out some final details before the new plant can be switched on.

After more than two years of construction – and a $24 million investment – the new plant includes scores of new pumps, motors and electrical panels. New buildings have gone up and massive concrete tanks will soon play home to millions of gallons of wastewater. The project has the feel of an almost-done renovation project. One of the big ones.

The new plant promises to be a much-need boon to water quality in the Lake George basin.

For years the current plant, which was originally designed and built in the 1930s, has failed to properly remove nitrates from the region’s wastewater. Those nitrates have found their way into nearby brooks that feed Lake George. The state since 2014 has maintained a consent order against the village requiring it to upgrade the plant.

But a new process and state-of-the-art technology should raise the treatment plant to modern standards. Read about my visit here.


Above: Tim Shudt, plant operator for the Village of Lake George wastewater treatment plant, stands on a new platform overlooking a critical step in the new wastewater treatment process. Photo by Zachary Matson

Editor’s note: This first appeared in Zach’s weekly “Water Line” newsletter. Click here to sign up.

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Zachary Matson has been an environmental reporter for the Explorer since October 2021. He is focused on the many issues impacting water and the people, plants and wildlife that rely on it in the Adirondack Park. Zach worked at daily newspapers in Missouri, Arizona and New York for nearly a decade, most recently working as the education reporter for six years at the Daily Gazette in Schenectady.

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