The small island of Jersey is served by a single wastewater treatment plant at Bellozanne. Since its inception some 30 years ago the sludge produced has been used on agricultural land.

Inevitably there are circumstances which prevent this happening without interruption, eg, poor weather, or seasonal demand. On these occasions, the island has no other disposal option to fall back on. Furthermore, concerns over the practice have created a perception that it might be doing harm to the ‘quality' of the farm produce.

The responsible body, the Public Services Department, formulated a flexible, multiple option solution and commissioned Halcrow to engineer the capital works. The works centre around a thermal drying plant using biogas produced by the digestion process as the main fuel. Waste heat is recovered for digester heating making the total process potentially self sufficient in energy. At the same time, the bulk of the product is reduced considerably, providing an easily transported material with potential for use directly on the land as a fertilizer substitute or as a low grade fuel.

Farfrom being a disposal problem requiring manpower and expense, sludge will soon be regarded by the States of Jersey as a valuable resource with a revenue potential.

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