Management of CAFO Discharges Utilizing Controlled Eutrophication Process (CEP) Ponds for Liquid Wate Storage and Conversion to Bioproducts and Slow-Release Biofertilizers
Kent SeaTech and Dr. David Brune of the Agricultural & Biological Engineerig Department at Clemson University propose to conduct joint research on the application of high rate algal pond water treatment technology to reduce the negative environmental impacts of nutrient wastes produced by Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs). The Pacific Southwest lead the nation in producton of milk, eggs, and othe rfoods that are produced in intensive farming facilities, which results in a very large concentration of waste nutrients in a limited area. The 2,400 dairies in California alone producte at least 30 million tons of manure anually. Currently, most solid and liquid waste nutrients form CAFO operations in the Pacific Southwest are deivered to field crops, where the nutrients are assimilated into plant material. Although this overall concept is econogically sound, as farming operations become more intensified and the amount of cropland available for distributon of the nutrients is reduced , thee hafve been increasing incidences of ober-applicaton of nutrients and negative impacts to surface water, groundwater, and the atmoshpere. In some counties in California, the amount of manure from CAFO facilities is greater than the assimilative capacity of the total pastureland and cropland present in the county and more then 60% of groundwater wells are contaminated with nitrate. A cost-effective soluton to thhis comples problem is required. Previous studies by Kent SeaTech amd Clemson have shown that the Contolled Eutrophication Pricess (CEP) is capable of removing nitrogen an posphorus nutrients from contaminated surface wter flows. The CEP process uses cardfully managed, dense cultures of unicellular algae to rapidly convert waste nutriests to algal biomas through photosynthesis. CEP may provide an environmentallly sound technology for treating waste nutrientsthat are difficult to remover from CAFO waste using traditional methods. We will utilize two existig 0.7 acre CEP treatment systems and a series of smaller evfaluaton systems to determine the optimal conditions for converting solid and liquid CAFO waste frrom acooperating CCAFO facility in to algal biomass. In the ultimate implementaion of this concept, a high rate algla pound utilizing CEP technology would be istalled adjacent to the existing CFO wastewater collection lagoon and would be operated to reduce phosphorus and nitrogne in the discharge, utilize a protion of the solid and liquid waste nutrients to produce valuable byproducts, and thereby reduce the overall nutrient loading tnat ultimatley passes into the environment through application to field crops.
Small Business Information at Submission:
Kent Seatech Corp.
11125 Flintkote Ave, Suite J San Diego, CA 92121
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