During 2016–2017, FCM published a technical case study about a facility upgrade in the Municipality of the District of Argyle, NS. Argyle's wastewater treatment facility did not meet provincial regulatory standards. Furthermore, many homes in the area relied on septic tanks and wells, a combination that raises the risk of contamination.
The upgrades added:
- A sequence-batch reactor
- An ultraviolet disinfection system
- A dewatering sludge management system
The upgrades significantly improved effluent quality: residual chlorine dropped from 1.31 mg per litre to 0.02 mg per litre, for instance. A heat-recovery system was installed to reduce energy costs, while the sludge-drying process reduces the costs of trucking away solids. Many homeowners have connected to the facility and abandoned their septic tanks.
The upgrade protects the quality of both groundwater and ocean water — an important consideration given the importance of commercial fishing to the region's economy.