The constructed wetlands at Edmonton International Airport will be upgraded using Forced Bed Aeration to improve treatment capacity. Photo courtesy of Associated Engineering

VADNAIS HEIGHTS, MINN. — Naturally Wallace Consulting (NWC) is teaming with Associated Engineering (AE) to design a major expansion of the existing wetland treatment system at Edmonton International Airport (EIA). This deicing treatment project is part of an overall expansion of the airport, which is scheduled to be completed in 2012. The existing constructed wetland system at EIA has been treating deicing runoff for almost a decade, but with the expansion of the airport, a major increase in overall treatment capacity will be required. The engineered wetland treatment design at EIA includes the installation of Forced Bed Aeration technology developed and patented by NWC. The system expansion is designed to produce a five-fold increase in glycol treatment capacity. Design work is under way and the system improvements will be tendered in the fall of 2010.

According to Scott Wallace, P.E., president of NWC, there are four key areas to consider when treating deicing runoff: the varying nature of winter storms, the type of deicing chemicals applied, effective nutrient addition, and the need for safe airfield operations.

“Large airfields such as EIA produce significant runoff with stormwater storage volumes typically sized in the hundreds of thousands of cubic meters,” said Kerry Rudd, P.Eng, president and CEO of Associated Engineering. “An engineered wetland system is an excellent solution for sustaining a large-scale treatment system in a cold, demanding environment.”

Treating glycol contaminated runoff resulting from deicing operations is a challenge at every airport faced with varying cold-climate winter conditions. Naturally Wallace Consulting is the leading solutions provider for airport deicing runoff systems with effective, natural treatment wetlands engineered specifically for this application. Completed NWC airport deicing projects include a subsurface flow engineered wetland system at Buffalo Niagara International Airport in New York that treats 1.2 million gallons daily of stormwater laden with deicing fluid. In addition to the EIA project, currently the NWC team is engaged by the British Airport Authority to design a deicing fluid remediation system for Heathrow Airport in conjunction with ARM Ltd. NWC is also on the project team with SD Consulting and Eryou Engineering designing an aerated gravel bed using NWC’s patented Forced Bed Aeration to treat deicing fluid at Macarthur Airport in Islip, Long Island (New York).