Press Release

BALTIMORE, MD (June 17, 2008)- MDE was present at today’s dedication ceremony of a new wastewater treatment plant in Chestertown, located on Maryland’s eastern shore. The WWTP was built to specifically deal with pollution in the Chester River and Chesapeake Bay area.

Town Manager William S Ingersoll greeted secretary Shari T. Wilson on her arrival at Tuesday’s event. Upon her welcoming at the dedication ceremony, opening statements and brief remarks were made on the future impact that the new upgraded facility will have. Following the main event, a ribbon cutting ceremony and those in attendance were given a brief tour of the new facility.

“MDE believes strongly in improving the quality of the water and general health of the Chesapeake Bay,” said Secretary of the Environment Shari T. Wilson. “The construction of new and improved wastewater treatment facilities will help us in achieving that goal.”

Construction started back in May 2006 and the total project cost over $9.1 million. The facility was recently completed this June thanks to a number of grants and revenue sources. The Bay Restoration fund was one of the major contributors to the funding of this environmental project. Because of the revenue that the Bay Restoration fund takes in, many more environmental projects can be undertaken including facilities that assist in the cleanup of the Bay.

The development of the new WWTP involved the planning, design and construction for the Biological Nutrient Removal (BNR) and Enhanced Nutrient Removal (ENR) facilities at the existing 0.9 million gallons per day (mgd) Chestertown Wastewater Treatment Plant.

Upon completion of the BNR and ENR upgrades, the Chestertown WWTP will be capable of achieving effluent quality with annual average nutrient goals of 3 mg/l for Total Nitrogen and 0.3 mg/l for Total Phosphorous. This reduces the yearly load of nitrogen by 83%, and the yearly load of phosphorous by 85%. These improvements will significantly decrease the amount of nutrients discharged into the Chester River and the Chesapeake Bay. Overall the quality of the water of Chester River and the Chesapeake Bay will be greatly improved which not only benefits the environment of Maryland but also will improve the health of its citizens.