Cape Elizabeth Wastewater Treatment Plant upgraded to eliminate use of chemicals and improve safety and performance


On June 9, the Portland Water District celebrated the completion of a $1 million project to upgrade disinfection at the Cape Elizabeth Wastewater Treatment Plant with a ribbon cutting ceremony (video can be found here:  Fittingly the ceremony was held during Maine Clean Water Week, this year June 7 -13, a week set aside to recognize the value and importance of our water resources as well as the need to protect and conserve them.  

The Cape Elizabeth Wastewater Treatment Facility serves 3,100 customers and processes a half million gallons of wastewater a day.  Once wastewater is thoroughly cleaned and treated it is released into the environment. Wastewater treatment plays an integral part to protect our environment and maintain the health and beauty of our water resources.

The wastewater plant was built in 1987 and relied on chemicals for disinfection. Now instead of relying on bulk chemicals to chlorinate and declorinate prior to releasing water into the environment, it passes through UV light to “inactivate” pathogenic organisms.  The new system eliminates the use of chemicals, decreases costs for the use and delivery of chemicals, improves overall safety to workers and the community, and improves operational performance. 

At the ceremony, General Manager Carrie Lewis praised project partners, including Cape Elizabeth and their Public Works Director Robert Malley, who was at the helm when the plant came on line over 30 years ago.

Both Portland Water District Trustees representing Cape Elizabeth and South Portland, Trustee Matthew Beck and Trustee Joseph Siviski, could not attend but shared their support in statements. “Cape Elizabeth can be proud of the changes made to the wastewater treatment facility relying less on chemicals and keeping the water clean in a way that preserves our environment,” said Trustee Beck.

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