Thimphu to have a new high-tech sewage treatment plant

A new sewage treatment plant using advanced technology will be constructed near the current sewage treatment plant in Babesa with funds from Asian Development Bank (ADB).

An engineer with Thimphu District Municipality (TDM), Samten Lhendrup, said, “There is no plan to shift the sewerage treatment plant from Babesa, but rather we are going to construct a new treatment in same area, but the process of treating the sewage will be done by using advanced technology.”

He said the high-tech sewage plant will not emit any foul smells that have driven away residents from houses nearby the plant.

He said it will be safe to dispose the end products from the plant into the river as the effluent from the treatment plant will be disposed as per the requirement and standards of World Health Organization (WHO) and National Environmental Commission (NEC).

The system of sewage treatment is done under a natural process which involves algae or bacteria. The treatment plant at Babesa has two series comprising of anaerobic ponds, facultative ponds and maturation ponds.

The total retention period is almost 55 days. So far, the treatment plant treats only domestic wastes.

Samten Lhendrup said the carrying capacity of the existing sewage treatment plant is 1.75million liters of sewage per day. The existing sewage treatment plant is to be decommissioned once the new treatment plant is constructed which may take almost 2 years to complete. The existing sewage coverage is 35 percent of Thimphu Throm. The bids for the construction of the new treatment are underway.

The new treatment technology is expected to increase the efficiency of sewage treatment process. The sewage treating capacity in the new plant is 10 million liters of sewage per day. About 85 percent of the total cost will be funded by Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the remaining by the Royal Government of Bhutan.

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