Improving Effluent in the Mining City

Butte- Silver Bow faced pressures to improve their wastewater discharge quality to Silver Bow Creek because of tightening permit limits. In addition, Superfund Site efforts to return Silver Bow Creek from an industrial sewer to a thriving mountain stream included improving the treatment plant effluent. The city and county of Butte-Silver Bow hired Morrison-Maierle to design and construct multiple upgrade projects that would significantly improve the quality of the treated effluent returning to Silver Bow Creek and create opportunities for Butte-Silver Bow to reclaim treated effluent for irrigation and industrial reuse.

As a result of this project, the removal of ammonia and reduced nutrients and heavy metal discharges into Silver Bow Creek helped improve aquatic habitat in the headwaters of the Clark Fork and Columbia River systems.

New chemical, biological and physical treatment processes are at the heart of the Butte-Silver Bow Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) Phase 2 MBR Upgrade project as part of one of the largest membrane bioreactors (MBR) in the upper Rocky Mountains.