Sophia's Peace Work

Tuesday, June 15, 2004

More on Poo

O.K. Maybe some of you out there can check my numbers and give me some feedback. The pretty pictures are at the end.

- Phase 0 of Rustimiyah South plant (built 1960), approx. 39,000 cu. m/day, serves 350,000 people
- The 1st Extension of the South plant (built 1971), approx. 40,000 cu. m/day, serves 400,000 people
- The 2nd Extension of the South plant (built 1980), approx. 90,000 cu. m/day, serves 750,000 people (This is the Extension that Bechtel is working on now)

So by this calculation, the south plant serves 1.5 million people ... 175,000 cu m./day.

- The 3rd Extension aka. Rustimiyah North plant (built 1987), has a flow of approx. 300,000 cu. m/day, so that means, according to the engineer I talked to, that can serve 3 million people.

So combined, the two plants should serve 4.5 million people. Baghdad is divided into two sections ... the east bank of the Tigris (known as Rasafa and served by the Rustimiyah plants) and the west bank (known as Kharkh and served by the Kharkh plant).

Sadr city ... the big city slums is in Rasafa (on the edge of the city). There are approx. 2 to 3 million people in Sadr City alone (which when you look at a map of Baghdad is astonishing ... they must be really packed in there ... but then again, numbers might be off here).

Baghdad as a whole is around 6 million people (stats are just an estimate though ... after the war there was a big influx of people ... I don't know if anyone really has a good count).

According to the engineer I talked to, if both Rustimiyah South and North were working, they would be just meeting the needs of Rusafa. (Actual flow to the plants is 473,000 cu. m/day ... the design capacity, if both plants were working, would be 475,000 cu. m/day) But neither plant is working and currently all the sewage goes right to the Diyala river. - very stinky -

According to the guy I talked (he wasn't an engineer by said he was with the "Technical Department") to about Kharkh ... the design capacity of the plant is 205,000 cu. m./day but the flow is 658,500 cu. m./day. This guy's info was a little more sketchy ... given the numbers above, the capacity of this plant should serve about 2 million people. The flow rate they gave me indicates that is actually getting the water from more than 6 million people ... which makes me think that the numbers here aren't quite right.

Kharkh has 6 different units, only two of which are working at this point ... so it is only working at about 1/3 capacity.

I don't know what the average Iraqi uses in terms of water per day (they wouldn't measure it in gallons) ... but people use water pretty freely here ... the two rivers here supply alot of water, and even though Iraq is generally surrounded by desert country, people use quite a bit of it ... boy, and they love to wash their cars! I've seen them take trucks down to rivers in the north, park the think in the middle of a stream and wash it down.

As for the process at the plant ... well basically, as it was explained to me, the water comes in from the main pump stations, goes through grit and grease removal, aeration, primary settling, sludge removal (the sludge then goes through a digester and into drying beds), the water goes for more aeration, to a final settling tank, then (atleast at the Rustimiyah plants) the water gets a shot of chlorine before heading to the river. The same is basically true at the Kharkh plant (sans the chlorine). The sludge, once dry is used as fertilizer but in both the case of the sludge and the water, they will do only basic testing (Dissolved Oxygen, Biological Oxygen Demand, pH).

I asked the man at the Kharkh plant how much time does it take for the water to go through the plant. He told me six hours and he had made several comments that he thought that that wasn't enough time to properly clean the water.

Anyway, on to the pictures

Rustimiyah Outfall into the Diyala River

Incoming water to the Kharkh Waste Water Treatment plant

Overflow of water to Kharkh Treatment plant goes straight to the Tigris River

Degreaser/Degrit area of Kharkh Treatment plant

Salah Ali of the Kharkh WWTP Technical Department - at the 1st Aeration station (He thought there was too much aeration)

A map of the Tigris River in Baghdad


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