Ecological Research Series
                       Environmental Research Laboratory
                       Office of Research and Development
                      U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
                             Corvallis, Oregon 97330


Research reports of the Office of Research and Development, U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency, have  been grouped into five  series. These five broad
categories were established to facilitate further development and application of
environmental technology.  Elimination of traditional  grouping was consciously
planned to foster technology transfer and a maximum interface in related fields.
The five series are:

     1.    Environmental Health Effects Research
     2.    Environmental Protection Technology
     3.    Ecological Research
     4.    Environmental Monitoring
     5.    Socioeconomic Environmental Studies

This report has been assigned to the ECOLOGICAL RESEARCH series. This series
describes research on the effects  of pollution on humans,  plant and animal
species, and materials. Problems are  assessed for their long- and short-term
influences. Investigations include formation, transport, and pathway studies to
determine the fate of pollutants and their effects. This work provides the technical
basis for setting standards to minimize undesirable changes in living organisms
in the aquatic, terrestrial, and atmospheric environments.
This document is available to the public through the National Technical Informa-
tion Service, Springfield, Virginia 22161.

                                        September 1976


               RURAL ALASKA


            Bertold Puchtler
              Barry Reid
          Conrad Christiansen
   Arctic Environmental Research Station
Con/all is Environmental Research Laboratory
          College, Alaska  99701
          CORVALLIS, OREGON  97330


This report has been reviewed by the Corvallis Environmental Research
Laboratory, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and approved for
publication.  Mention of trade names or commercial products does not
constitute endorsement or recommendation for use.

The "Alaska Village Demonstration Projects" (AVDP) were authorized
by Section 113, P. L. 92-500 (86 STAT 816), for the purpose of demon-
strating methods to improve sanitary conditions in native villages
of Alaska.  Central community facilities have been constructed in the
native villages of Emmonak and Wainwright to provide a safe water
supply; toilets, bathing and laundry facilities; and sewage and waste

The idea of coming to a community center to secure water, to do the
laundry, and to bathe has proven acceptable to the people of Wain-
wright and Emmonak.  However, Alaskan native villages generally can
not pay, through service charges, the full cost of routine operation
and maintenance of water-related utilities, especially where complex
treatment is required to meet waste treatment standards.

The physical-chemical wastewater treatment provided required consid-
erable modification and detailed operator attention to provide
consistent secondary treatment.  There is no single best method of
constructing water-related utility facilities in rural Alaska.  A
limited number of standard designs can not be expected to meet the
wide range of local conditions.

The U. S.  Public Health Service and the Alaska Department of Environ-
mental Conservation are the two agencies with primary responsibility
to establish and improve water-related utility services in rural
Alaska.  Appropriate institutions do exist for providing native vil-
lages with the technical, logistic and administrative support they
need to operate and maintain basic utilities.   Funding for operation
and maintenance and the level of waste treatment required remain  as
issues for resolution.

ABSTRACT                                                           1i1
LIST OF FIGURES   -                                                viii
LIST OF TABLES                                                      ix
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS                                                      x
  I  INTRODUCTION                                                     1
          Background                                                  1
          Scope and Purpose                                           1
          Legislative Intent                                          2
 II  CONCLUSIONS                                                      4
          Central Community Facility Concept                          4
          Institutional Needs                                         4
          Operation and Maintenance Costs                             4
          Integration of Utilities                                    4
          Employment and Economic Development                         4
          Method of Constructing Facilities                           5
          Fire Protection                                             5
          Equipment and Processes                                     5
          Other Statewide Programs
          Future Direction                                            5
III  RECOMMENDATIONS                                                  6
 IV  PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION                                           7
          Operation and Maintenance Contracts                         7
          Completion of the Emmonak Facility                          7

                        CONTENTS  CONTINUED

          Wainwright Fire                                        11

          Second Generation  Facility -  Wainwright  II             14

               Design                                           14

               Construction                                      2]

          Modular Integrated Utility System at Wainwright        23

          Design for Smaller Villages                           24

  V  OPERATIONAL EVALUATION  - WAINWRIGHT                        25

          Potable Water Treatment                               25

          Graywater Treatment                                   25

          Blackwater and Sludge Incineration                    27

          Heating System                                        27

          Facility Management and Use                           30

 VI  OPERATIONAL EVALUATION  - EMMONAK                           33

          Potable Water Treatment                               34

          Graywater Treatment                                   38

          Blackwater Dewatering and Sludge Incineration         44

          Heating System                                        48

          Electricity                                           50

          Fire Protection                                        51

          Structure and Foundation                              52

          Facility Management and Use                           ^4

VII  PROJECT COSTS                                              59

          Capital Investments                                   59

          Operating Expenses                                    60

                         CONTENTS CONTINUED

VIII  OTHER STATEWIDE PROGRAMS                                   62

           Indian Health Service                                 62

           State of Alaska                                       65

  IX  ISSUES                                                     68

           Operation and Maintenance Support                     68

           Effluent Standards                                    69

   X  INSTITUTIONAL CONSIDERATIONS                               70

  XI  REFERENCES                                                 71

                         LIST OF FIGURES
Number                                                        Page
   1       Emmonak Laundry Area                                  9
   2      Emmonak Water and Waste Treatment  Systems              10
   3      Wainwright I  - Before Fire                             12
   4      Wainwright I  - Completely Destroyed  by  Fire            13
   5      Wainwright II - First Level  Floor  Plan                 16
   6      Wainwright II - Second Level  Floor Plan                17
   7      Wainwright II - Potable Water Treatment Plant          18
   8      Wainwright II - Graywater Treatment  Plant              19
   9      Wainwright II - Graywater System Piping Diagram        20
  10      Wainwright II - Under Construction                    22
  11       Original  Wastewater Treatment Plant  - Wainwright AVDP  28
  12      Modified Wastewater Treatment Plant  - Wainwright AVDP  29
  13      Water Sales at Wainwright                              32
  14      Water System at Emmonak                               35
  15      Graywater and Blackwater System at Emmonak             39
  16      Exterior Fire Protection at  Emmonak                    52
  17      Water Sales at Emmonak                                56

                           LIST OF TABLES
Number                                                          Page

  1         Results of Physical-Chemical Treatment of            30
           Graywater at the Original Wainwright
           Utilities Center

  2        Raw Water and Potable Water Characteristics          36
           at Emmonak

  3        Graywater and Treated Graywater Characteristics      40
           at Emmonak

  4        Results of Centrifuge Operation in Treatment         46
           of Blackwater at Emmonak

  5        Emmonak Facility Use and Income                      53

The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation and the Alaska
Area Office of Environmental Health, Indian Health Service, U.S.
Public Health Service, Department of Health, Education and Welfare,
were consulted and provided information to aid in the preparation of
this report.   Both offices reviewed the report in late draft form to
minimize errors and misinterpretations.  In addition, the City Councils
of Ernmonak and Wainwright, the Mayor of the North Slope Borough, the
Alaska Federation of Natives and Nunam Kitlutsisti (the environmental
protection branch of the Association of Village Council Presidents in
the Lower Yukon-Kuskokwim region) made valuable contributions to the '
report which are gratefully acknowledged.

Unless otherwise stated, the views, conclusions and recommendations
are those of the Alaska Village Demonstration Project staff and the
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.   Wherever substantial dif-
ferences of opinion occurred, they are so  indicated in the text.

                             SECTION I


The Alaska Village Demonstration Projects (AVDP) serve to demonstrate
methods of improving environmental health conditions in rural Alaska.
The need for such improvements is great.  Seventy percent of Alaska's
natives live in small villages where safe water is seldom obtainable
and where adequate waste disposal is often impossible without facili-
ties for special treatment.  Typical sources of drinking water are
streams, ponds, or rain during the summer.  Many of these ponds and
streams are stagnant and contaminated.  In areas underlain by perma-
frost, wells are generally unproductive.  During the winter, villagers
cut ice and melt it in discarded fuel drums at home.

Simple methods of waste disposal are often not possible because of
unfavorable terrain and soil conditions.  Many villages are subject to
annual flooding.  Wastes from latrines and dumps re-emerges during
flood periods and are spread throughout the town.  Communities along
the Arctic Ocean store wastes from "honey buckets" in empty drums some
distance from the home.  In early spring, the frozen drums are hauled
out onto the ocean ice for disposal.  During the short summer, the
stench can be annoying and pervasive.  The health hazard associated
with this practice is serious.

The difficulties of arriving at satisfactory, practical solutions to
water supply and waste disposal problems in such locations are as great
as the need.  Successful application of many conventional approaches is
ruled out by high costs or the severe climate.  Water is in the frozen
state most of the year.  The processes by which wastes naturally tend
to decompose are interrupted and seriously retarded by the long winters
The cold also tends to preserve pathogens for longer periods than under
normal weather conditions.   These considerations substantially increase
associated health hazards.   Basic health and environmental standards
can be achieved only through new service concepts such as reuse of
water and through application of unconventional technology.

These are some of the pressing problems which stimulated legislation
to conceive, construct, and install prototype facilities which demon-
strate methods of providing basic utility services in Alaskan native


The Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972, Section
113, "Alaska Village Demonstration Projects," required that the En-
vironmental Protection Agency report to Congress on the results of

the projects by July 1973.  The interim report submitted at that
time described the work accomplished in the villages of Emmonak and
Wainwright and presented preliminary results.  No specific recommen-
dations relating to the establishment of a statewide program were
included.  After an adequate period of facility operation and evalua-
tion, another report was planned for July 1975 to present technical,
economic and social findings in less tentative terms.  Unfortunately,
the Alaska Village Demonstration Project suffered a major setback in
November 1973 when the Wainwright facility was destroyed by fire.
Loss of the Wainwright project, subsequent efforts to replace it, and
work required to make the Emmonak facility operational  resulted in
postponement of the second interim report.

Despite these difficulties, substantial progress has been made, valu-
able technical information has been acquired and important policy
issues have been identified.  The purpose of the present report is (1)
to provide an evaluation of the implementation and operation of the
project, and (2) to describe other Federal and State programs for providing
water-related utility services in rural Alaska.


The Alaska Village Demonstration Projects called for the design and
construction of one or more central community facilities to demonstrate
methods which "provide for safe water and the elimination or control of
water pollution in those native villages in Alaska without such facili-
ties."  Provisions for bathing and laundering were to be included.
Health and hygiene related educational  and training programs were author-
ized.  Also, the projects were to result in the development of prelimi-
nary plans to provide safe water and control environmental pollution in all
Alaskan native villages.

The intent of the legislation was to demonstrate methods of meeting
the water-related service needs of a village at a central community
facility as opposed to the more conventional approach of extending
full-scale water and sewage service to all homes.  A secondary consid-
eration was that the facilities be of modular design to permit easy
transport and quick installation.  It was felt that this approach could
reduce the construction costs and permit facility relocation if the
village, at some future date, was moved to a different site.  In 1969-
1970, village relocation was a legitimate consideration.  Before enact-
ment of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971, the long-term
existence of many smaller villages was uncertain.

Hope was expressed that the demonstration project would be completed
in 2 years, that several prototype designs would be available to
meet the requirements of most Alaska villages, and that the initial
authorization of $1 million would be sufficient for four or five
installations.   Early in the project it became apparent that these

expectations were not realistic.  It was found that additional funds
would be required to complete just two installations.  In 1972,
another $1 million was authorized and appropriated to continue the

The legislation did not address two pertinent questions.  First, who
would own the completed facility, and second, how the facilities would
be operated and maintained in communities without sufficient resources
to pay the cost.

                            SECTION II



The idea of coming to a community center to secure water, to do the
laundry, and to bathe (instead of performing these functions in the
individual homes) has proven acceptable to the people of Wainwright
and Emmonak.  In communities where piped distribution and collection
systems would be extraordinarily difficult to install, or where water
is especially scarce, the Central Community Facility concept has been
demonstrated as a viable method to meet basic water-related needs of
Alaskan native villages.  Combined with a vehicular distribution and
collection system, the concept can serve as more than an interim


Regional native health or housing authorities appear to be the appro-
priate institutions for providing native villages with the technical,
logistic and administrative support they need to operate and maintain
basic utilities.  However, they can fill this essential role only if
they receive State or Federal financial support.  Federal support
could be furnished under provisions of the Indian Self-Determination
and Education Assistance Act (P.L. 93-638).


With rare exception, Alaska native villages can not pay, through
service charges, the full cost of routine operation and maintenance
of water-related utilities, especially where complex treatment is
required to meet established waste treatment standards.


The electric power available in most Alaskan villages is of poor
quality and furnished by inefficient installations which waste larqe
amounts of useable heat.  Through integration of the several village
utility components, reliability could be increased, personnel costs
reduced, and substantial energy savings accomplished.


The utility service centers sponsored under the AVDP program are
labor intensive.  In regions of very high unemployment and low
incomes they add from four to six full-time jobs for local people.
Thus, when operation and maintenance resources are available, these
installations contribute to the economic well-being of the villages.


There is no single best method of constructing water-related utility facili-
ties in rural Alaska.  Local conditions, accessibility, etc., are so
varied that a limited number of standard designs could not be expected to
effectively meet the wide range of conditions.


Providing full fire protection for public facilities in rural Alaska is
unusually difficult and expensive.  However, since fire is a major threat
to facilities in cold climate regions, a decision not to provide this pro-
tection requires careful consideration of resources available for replace-
ment.  Insurance is generally not available except at very high premiums.


Treatment processes for rural Alaska must be able to accommodate extreme
variability of raw wastes and should be designed as simply as possible
to meet standards.  The physical-chemical wastewater treatment package plants
furnished with the original facilities at Wainwright and Emmonak required
considerable modification and detailed operator attention to consistently
provide secondary treatment.


The U.  S. Public Health Service and the State of Alaska Department of Environ-
mental  Conservation are the two agencies with primary responsibility to
establish and improve water-related utility services in rural Alaska.  Al-
though their approach to meeting these basic needs is different, both
appear to be a viable mechanism for accomplishing a statewide program.


The U.  S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) can continue to make impor-
tant contributions in improving utility services in Alaskan villages
through its cold climate research capability at the Arctic Environmental
Research Station (AERS) in College, Alaska.   By developing certain innova-
tive features and modifying existing technology in facilities constructed
by other agencies, and through evaluation and process optimization, the
EPA can attain desired environmental objectives.  Such applied research is
necessary, not only in relation to water and waste problems in villages,
but in reference to electric power generation and conservation of energy.

                              SECTION  III

Upon completion of the facilities at Emmonak and Wainwright,  direct  involve-
ment by EPA in the construction of village facilities  should  be  concluded.
It is recommended that the Agency shift its emphasis towards  an  applied
research program in the Arctic to meet the unique technological  needs  for
environmental protection in this rapidly developing region.

                            SECTION  IV

                      PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION
The July 1973 Report to Congress described in detail the early stages
of project implementation.  Therefore, only subsequent considerations
and events will be discussed here.


During the initial months of facility construction and operation, two
men from each village were temporarily hired by EPA to be trained and
introduced to the job of operating and maintaining the facilities.
Materials and supplies required for facility operation were initially
furnished by EPA; overall supervision was provided by EPA's AVDP staff.

In mid-1973, as a first step in transferring management responsibility
to the villages, and as a way to accomplish facility completion, evalu-
ation and modification, cost-sharing contracts were negotiated with
the City Councils of Emmonak and Wainwright.  Under these contracts
the operators originally hired by EPA became City employees with EPA
project engineers providing the necessary technical guidance.   Facil-
ity income was applied against costs, with EPA paying the balance.
Both contracts became effective in November 1973.

Transfer of ownership of the Emmonak facility to the community is
currently being discussed with the City Council.  After transfer of
ownership, the community will continue to need some financial  assist-
ance to operate and maintain the facility.  It is envisioned that
EPA and the City of Emmonak will agree to a short-term (2-3 years)
fixed price contract.  This contract arrangement will require more
management responsibility by the City Council and will give them time
to properly plan for long-term operation.  In return, EPA will continue
to receive the detailed financial and operating data necessary to pre-
pare the final Report to Congress.


Bionomics Control Corporation (a subsidiary of Maurice P. Foley Company
in Washington, D. C.), the contractor responsible for the design and
construction of the central community facility at Emmonak, performed
unsatisfactorily.  In mid-1973 he declared inability to finish the
job, leaving EPA with an incomplete, poorly constructed facility which
required modification and upgrading in a number of critical areas.

Major structural difficulties resulted from the contractor's decision
to install sumps and drains below the floor of the building and to keep
these from freezing by skirting the foundation.  Since the foundation
had been designed to remain exposed to the ambient air, the ground
below the foundation was subject to differential freezing, causing

severe heaving of the perimeter and shifting of the building modules.
To correct this problem extensive modifications were required.

The original facility design called for a prototype molten salt cata-
lytic combustor for sludge disposal and primary heat.  After the
contractor experienced developmental problems with the catalytic
combustor, a conventional  incinerator was used as a replacement.
Since insufficient space had been alloted for this equipment in the
original building, an annex had to be constructed.

In December 1973, a safety inspection by EPA's Safety Management Staff
identified 33 inadequacies with recommendations for correction.  These
ranged from minor tasks such as installing exit signs, emergency lights
and vacuum relief valves,  to major modifications such as providing
external fire fighting capability, installing an auxiliary generator,
upgrading and extending the fire sprinkler system and relocating the
fuel storage tanks.

Since the original contractor had failed to supply adequate facility
plans and design information, and due to the piece-meal, remedial
nature of the remaining work, only a few of the facility completion
tasks could be performed under contract.  Therefore, progress in making
the facility fully functional was slow and was accomplished essentially through
inhouse efforts.  By March 1975, all major systems were complete and in
operation.  (Figures 1 & 2).

The services provided to the community of Emmonak (pop. 450) are varied but
limited.  The villagers' needs for bathing and laundering have been met.
Institutions such as the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) school, the hotel-
restaurant-office complex  called for the community center, and the new high
school are connected via short utiliducts.  These institutions get potable
water.  Their graywater (laundry, shower and sink wastewater) and blackwater
(toilet wastewater) are treated on a routine basis.

Most drinking water used in the homes is hand-carried from the facility or
transported by snowmobiles and sleds.  This is not fully satisfactory
because the water could be contaminated in transit; also, some of the more
distant households use water from the facility only intermittently.

Disposal of human wastes from homes is accomplished by honey bucket.
A receiving station for honey buckets has been constructed at the
facility.  Whether villagers will find it possible to individually
transport honey buckets to the treatment plant for disposal remains
to be seen.

To evaluate alternative delivery systems, two vehicles with trailers are
available to deliver water and collect wastes.  One is a small, 18-horse
power, tracked vehicle, the Ranger V, manufactured by N. P. Arnold Company,
Inc.; the other is a 1-ton, four-wheel drive Dodge pickup with oversized
tires and a snowplow.  So  far, neither vehicle has served effectively,
partly because higher priority work has demanded the operators' attention,
but also because of the very difficult driving conditions at Emmonak.

Figure 1.  Emmonak Laundry Area

Figure 2.   Emmonak Water and  Wastewater Treatment Systems

Improvements in the maintenance and the performance of the two vehicles
can and will be made, providing additional useful  information.  How-
ever, to provide Emmonak homes with full scale delivery and pickup
service and a satisfactory method of solid waste disposal  will require
a comprehensive program involving drainage, road improvement, holding
tanks and fixtures in homes, a vehicle maintenance facility, several
large tanker trucks and perhaps a small tractor.  Such a project is
considered beyond the scope of work authorized by the AVDP legislation.


The Wainwright facility was essentially complete and its various systems
in full operation at the time of the fire.  (Figure 3).  A comprehensive
technical evaluation of the facility was under way.  Two trained, competent
village residents were in charge of the operation and maintenance of the
facility under the EPA contract with the City of Wainwright.

On Saturday, November 24, 1973, at approximately 8:30 p.m., a fire was
reported in the central facility.  The operators had checked the building
at 7:30 p.m., found nothing out of order and had secured it for the night.
The weather was relatively warm (0 to 10F) but very windy.

The fire, when discovered, was confined to the attic.  One of the facility
operators and a companion entered the attic area and observed flames on
the heat exchanger and stack enclosure.  They fought the fire with hand
extinguishers with little effect.  Thick smoke forced both men to retreat
and they were unable to reenter the attic.  Several volunteers climbed
onto the roof and unsuccessfully attempted to extinguish the fire around
the stack with hand extinguishers.  By 9:30 p.m., the facility was com-
pletely destroyed.  (Figure 4)

The central facility was unoccupied at the time of the fire and no one
was injured.  Adjacent structures and equipment such as the water storage
tank, generator building, utiliduct and fuel storage tanks were not damaged

The investigation into the cause of the fire concluded that the fire did
originate on the heat exchanger enclosure located in the attic space.
The enclosure consisted of a 4-inch cavity wall with the interior plywood
surface treated with fire retardant paint.  The cavity was filled with
fiberglass insulation and the outside wall finished with plywood.

The fire is presumed to have been caused by heat which escaped from a
flange at one end of the heat exchanger and passed through the inside wall
of the enclosure, charring then igniting the combustible wall material
on the attic side.  What caused the heat exchanger to overheat or
to fail has not been determined.  The AVDP staff did inspect and
partially dismantle the heat exchanger after the fire.  However, without


Figure 3.  Wainwright I - Before Fire.

Figure 4.  Wainwright I - Completely Destroyed by Fire

special tools and equipment they were unable to completely dismantle
the unit for detailed examination.

The facility was equipped with a "Halon 1301" fire suppression  system
which was designed to protect the high hazard areas of the building,
including the heat exchanger enclosure.  However, the Halon system
was set up to flood the heat exchanger space from the inside.   The
system was not designed to protect the outside of the enclosure or
the attic space.  At what time during the fire the Halon System dis-
charged is not known.  A rate of rise detector was located inside the
heat exchanger enclosure.

Regardless of the precise cause of the fire, one fact is obvious.  The
facility did not have an adequate fire suppression system, nor  was
there a well defined fire fighting plan for the village.

Immediately after the fire, the AVDP staff took action to protect the
remaining components of the facility complex and to provide the village
with potable water throughout the winter.  A temporary building was
erected adjacent to the 1-million-gallon, insulated, raw water  storage
tank which had originally been provided by the Indian Health Service.
A  small boiler and other equipment was installed to protect the water
storage tank from freezing and to dispense water to the village.  The
Indian Health Service supplied two tracked Bombardier Musket Carrier
vehicles to haul water for delivery to the BIA school and to individual
homes.  A location was selected for disposal of school sanitary wastes
and of fire debris.  After spring breakup the facility site was cleared
of debris in preparation for rebuilding.  In 1974, the Indian Health
Service constructed a vehicle shelter and maintenance building, as a
first major step in replacing the former facility.


In February 1974, EPA decided to move ahead as rapidly as possible to
replace the destroyed facility.  Total cost was estimated at $650,000.
To provide initial financing, funds earlier earmarked for construction
of a third facility, at a yet undesignated location, were reprogrammed
for reconstruction of the Wainwright Center.


In replacing the Wainwright facility, several changes were made in the
original  procedures and design.  Experience with the project had identi'
fied the important desirable features of a central community facility.
On the basis of these features, design and technical specifications
were prepared under a conventional Architectural and Engineering (A&E)
contract by the CH2M/Hill Corporation in Anchorage, Alaska.  Construc-
tion is being accomplished under a firm price contract.

The unqualified acceptance by Wainwright residents of the central com-
munity facility concept indicated that the replacement plant should be
permanent.   Experience with interfacing the individually transportable


building modules of the former facility and the one at Emmonak showed
that to provide for the possibility of relocating this type of facility
was not a good project criterion.  The second generation plant, there-
fore, is housed in a larger, prefabricated metal building with 21
ft. eaves.  The additional space makes possible the use of gravity
drains, improves access for equipment maintenance and provides the
public greater comfort in the laundromat and bathing areas.  All
treatment equipment is on the first floor and the public area is  lo-
cated in a mezzanine.  Figures 5 and 6 show floor plans.

Additional emphasis was placed on fire safety in the new facility.
A sprinkler system will protect the entire structure.  External fire
fighting capability will be provided.  All wood above the foundation
will be fire retardant treated, and walls will  be of type X gypsum
or asbestos millboard.

In the absence of large amounts of water under pressure, providing
a sprinkler system that fully meets code was expensive.  Two alterna-
tives were presented.  One was a large diesel-driven pump which would
start automatically upon release of a sprinkler head.  The other was
a 5000-gallon steel vessel in which water is kept under pressure by
a heavy duty compressor.  The latter system, considered more reliable
and economical, was selected.

Since the quality of raw water at Wainwright is uniformly high, it was
decided that potable water treatment could be accomplished without
coagulation.  Potable water, therefore, will be produced by carbon
adsorption, filtration, and disinfection with sodium hypochlorite.
Plant capacity has been increased to 12,000 gallons per day (gal/day)
and storage capacity for potable water will be 5,000 gallons.  A
schematic diagram of the potable water plant is shown in Figure 7.

Wainwright has no year-round source of liquid water.  A 1-million-
gallon insulated storage tank, provided by the Indian Health Service,
limits the amount of raw water available to the community in a year.
Therefore, as in the original facility, reuse of graywater for laun-
dering is planned.  Graywater treatment at Wainwright II, however,
will substitute powdered carbon for granular carbon.  This change
was made to avoid innoculation of the recycle water system with
microorganisms which seem to thrive in carbon columns.  In the
potable water system this problem will not be significant because
the raw water contains very few bacteria will be filtered
and disinfected after passing through the adsorption unit.

The size of the graywater treatment system was increased to 25,000
gal/day so that more water would be available in the laundry.  Also,
the storage capacity for raw graywater was increased from 1,200
gallons to 5,000 gallons so that laundry and shower water would cool
down before treatment.  This should reduce the thermal shock loading
which caused difficulties in the floculation/sedimentation chamber
of the original plant.  Schematics of the graywater treatment systems
are shown in Figures 8 and 9.


Figure 5.  Wainwright II - First Level Floor Plan

Figure 6.  Wainwright II - Second Level Floor Plan

Figure 7.   Wainwright II - Potable Water Treatment Plant

Figure 8.  Wainwright II - Graywater Treatment Plant

       figure 9.  Wainwright  II  - Graywater System Piping Diagram

Blackwater will be treated in a package plant similar to that provided
for graywater treatment, but smaller.  The plant will receive human
wastes and process sludge supernatant from graywater treatment.   This
will be held in an aerated tank and treated on a batch basis.  Accumu-
lated solids will be allowed to settle and then be removed, disin-
fected by lime treatment to pH 11 or higher and then disposed on land
at a designated site away from the village.  Together with excess
treated graywater, the final effluent will be disinfected and dis-
charged to the ocean.

Because of the high energy cost of incineration, regardless of heat
recovery devices, no incinerator will be provided by the project.
The North Slope Borough administration is investigating the use  of
local coal to generate power in a plant to be constructed adjacent to
the central community facility.  This plan has the potential  for creat-
ing  an efficient, well-integrated utility complex at Wainwright.
Incineration could be accomplished more economically in the power plant,
and large quantities of waste heat would be available for heating the
adjacent public building.  In anticipation of this development,  Wain-
wright II was designed to permit easy interface with future power
generation to recover waste heat.  Until such time as power can  be
furnished reliably by a central power plant, electricity required
in the central community facility will come from a 50 KVA diesel
generator.  A heat recovery silencer will be installed to extract
exhaust heat for other process uses.


Upon completion of the revised design for Wainwright, in October 1974,
it became clear that the reconstruction work could not be done with
what funds remained of the $2 million authorized for the projects by
Congress.  In the course of the year, the massive amount of Trans-
Alaskan Pipeline work and inflation had caused construction costs in
Alaska to rise sharply.  Total cost of Wainwright II was now esti-
mated at $1,100,000.  In November 1974, the Alaska Congressional
Delegation sponsored identical bills in the Senate and the House to
increase the amount to $3,500,000.  After Congress reconvened in
early 1975, the legislation was resubmitted as H. R. 3813 and S. 1151.

To reestablish beneficial occupancy at the earliest date, major
equipment items and materials were identified early in the design pro-
cess and purchased by EPA.  This permitted the project to take ad-
vantage of funds available in FY-1974, and especially to save time and
money by shipping via the annual arctic summer sealift.

A plan to have the building erected before onset of winter was unsuc-
cessful.  Invitations for bid resulted in a single response at an
extreme price of $193,045 which was rejected.  It was decided to
secure the materials and equipment already at Wainwright under surplus
tents and tarps for the winter and to erect the building during  sum-
mer 1975 when more time would be available to do the job.  Sufficient
funds remained under the original authorization to do this.


    Figure 10.   Wainwright II - Under Construction

A firm price contract for two phases of work was awarded to the Rudy
Simone Construction Company, Inc., in Bellevue, Washington, in Feb-
ruary 1975.  This company was the low bidder among four.  Phase I,
at the cost of $579,454 to be completed by November 1, 1975, called
for the erection of the building and procurement of the remaining
equipment and materials needed to finish the job.  Equipment instal-
lation and facility completion was to be accomplished under the second
phase of the contract at a firm price of $494,839, to be awarded on
or before August 28, 1975.  An extension of the acceptance period for
Phase II work until November 15 was negotiated with the contractor at
a cost of $84,942.  Work is underway now which should lead to comple-
tion of the facility by August 1976. Figure 10.


The community of Wainwright, like most Alaskan villages, is in urgent
need, not only of basic water-related utility services which are the
prime concern of the AVDP, but also of a more reliable and efficient
electric power generation and distribution system.  The several small
diesel generators at Wainwright (located at the local school, the city
power plant and at the AVDP facility) provide power with poorly regula-
ted voltage and interupted service and at great fuel expense.  Through
better integration of power generation with water and waste treatment,
substantial energy savings could be realized.

Recently the North Slope Borough administration decided to construct
a new power plant for the City of Wainwright.  Timing dictated that
the system employ diesel powered generators.  The system which has
been designed will provide electricity for the schools, the AVDP
and the village and will include a significantly upgraded distribu-
tion system.

Integration of the power generation system through the use of heat
recovery will be accomplished.  A new high school which is currently
under design will be heated with "waste" heat from the power plant and
"waste" heat will also be piped to the AVDP facility for use in heating
the water storage tank and the building.

The unique opportunity to demonstrate a well-integrated arctic village
utility system at Wainwright has been recognized by the U.S. Depart-
ment of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).  An $86,000 contribution
to the AVDP program provided for design and equipment in the new
Wainwright central community facility which will permit utilization
of excess heat from the central power plant.  An additional HUD con-
tribution will  be used to complete the inter-tie between the new
power plant and the AVDP facility.

Similar approaches to the energy problem have been applied in both
industrial and municipal situations in other parts of the United
States but none has had the ultimate effect of increasing the indi-
vidual standard of living as significantly as is anticipated in the

case of Wainwright or other communities in the Alaskan bush.  Suc-
cessful demonstration of the integrated utility system concept  in
Alaska may mark the beginning of a new way of life for the people
in rural communities.


With the decision to replace the Wainwright facility, plans for
building a third central community facility at a smaller  Interior
Alaskan village were suspended.

In April 1972, work on a design for such a third facility was begun
under a research and development contract with Stefano and Associates
in Anchorage, Alaska.  This contract has been inactive since 1973,
when the funds programmed for the work ($60,233) had been used  up.
The design concept incorporates some important features of a total
integrated utility system.  Over the past year, the Agency has  been
engaged in negotiations with Stefano and Associates to conclude the
work by furnishing additional drawings, a listing of equipment
and a facility description.  Full technical and bid specifications
can then be developed at some future time.

                            SECTION V

The Wainwright facility served a community of about 360 people.  It
had been well constructed and its performance met most expectations.
It was in operation for 8 months prior to the fire.  Operational data
in existence for that period consists of accurate facility use records
and periodic performance evaluations conducted in the process of fine
tuning the potable water plant and during the modifications in opti-
mizing performance of the graywater treatment components.


Because of the relative high quality of the raw water, only minor ad-
justments of the potable water treatment plant were required.  It was
concluded that chemical addition for purposes of coagulation was prob-
ably superfluous.  This finding was taken into account in the design
of the replacement plant which will produce potable water by means of
filtration, carbon adsorption and chlorination only.


Performance of the graywater plant proved sensitive to influent tem-
perature fluctuations.  Plant upsets occurred at regular intervals of
about 6 weeks.  Occasionally, graywater production from washers and
showers exceeded the combined capacity of the treatment unit and of the
graywater storage tank (1,200 gals.) and thereby caused service to the
public to be interrupted.

Plant upsets due to biological growth and decomposition in accumulated
sludges occurred in spite of disinfectants applied to the system.
Wastewater entering the graywater holding tank was dosed with a quater-
nary ammonium compound, known by the name of "Roccal," at about 60 mg/1
This compound was rated as a very efficient disinfectant.  Lime used in
the upflow clarifier during operation to achieve pH-^11 was also con-
sidered to be an effective disinfectant.  Finally, chlorine was applied
to the product water at about 10 mg/1 to maintain a chlorine residual
^1.0 mg/1 after 1 hour contact in the treated water holding tank.
Despite such routine disinfection measures, the system would occasion-
ally foster biological growths, and the only procedure to correct the
upset was to start over with clean water and clean tanks.

From the very beginning, the upflow clarifier failed to perform ade-
quately.  Performance was characterized by massive floe carryover into
the recarbonization chamber and other downstream tanks.  An extremely
wide range of chemical dosages was tested in an attempt to achieve
good performance of the up-flow clarifier.  At all dosages, large quan-
tities of sludge carried over into downstream vessels.

To prevent further upset due to upflow clarifier or recarbonization
chamber sludge accumulation, plumbing was arranged to completely
bypass the upflow clarifier and the recarbonization chamber which
were then left dewatered.

Concurrent with sludge carryover from the upflow clarifier, sludge
buildup in the chemical mixing chambers of the "Clearflow" unit
was observed.  The problem could be remedied temporarily by pumping
out all five sections on a regular and frequent basis but this
proved to be difficult and unsatisfactory.  Because of  "Clear-
flow" construction, it was impossible to remove all the accumulated
sludge which eventually became septic and infected downstream tanks
and processes.

A more satisfactory solution to the "Clearflow" sludge accumulation
problem was obtained by bypassing the chemical mixing chambers and
using the influent pipe as combination mixing chamber and distri-
bution header.  After a period of operation, however, sludge still
accumulated in the chemical mixing chambers due to hydraulic pressure
and again became septic, resulting in plant upset.

In October 1973, the wastewater treatment system was revised in
the field for greater ease of operation and better performance.  The
baffle plate between the sedimentation tank and chemical mixing
chambers was removed entirely.  This permitted withdrawal of sludge
from the entire area subject to accumulation and was expected to
prevent future upsets attributable to sludge accumulation.

Mixing in the influent pipe seemed to improve the system.  By
using different polyelectrolytes, performance was further enhanced.
The modified system, however, was not without problems.' The upflow
clarifier and recarbonization chambers had previously acted as
thermal buffers to absorb some of the shock of hot wastewater from
the laundry and showers which was now applied directly  to the "Clear-
flow."  Convection currents in the sedimentation/floculation chamber
were observed to reduce the clarification efficiency of the "Clear-

The hydrasieve never performed according to expectations.  Its primary
value would have been in its ability to remove relatively large sus-
pended particles from normal sewage.  Since the facility did not pro-
cess sewage per se, this advantage was not realized.  Because all
of the graywater was pumped to the graywater storage tank, most of
the lint and hair was incidentally removed by becoming  lodged in
pump impellers prior to graywater tank.  Other solids,  such as silt
and sand,  were too small to be retained on the hydrasieve.  Process
sludge was too weak to be retained on the screen and was automatically
reintroduced into the system.

To avoid the several problems connected with the hydrasieve, a pump
with a basket-type strainer was installed at the laundry sump.  The
strainer of this pump was very effective in removing laundry lint and
preventing pump impeller clogging and lint collection in the graywater
tank.  Process sludge was withdrawn continuously from the sedimentation
hopper of the "Clearflow" unit by a pump and fed to the centrifuge.
This procedure proved to be much superior to the former arrangement.

Figures 11 and 12 permit comparison of the graywater treatment system
before and after modification.

Between May and October 1973, data were collected at five different
times at the end of field trips when the plant was operating properly.
The results, as summarized in Table 1, do not reflect the effect of
plant upsets.

Coliform bacteria were detected in the effluent following periodic
plant upsets.  It is felt, however, that no personal contamination
from this source resulted since the laundry used predominately hot
water which destroys coliforms.

Bacterial contamination was the primary threat to the validity of
the water reuse concept.  Very low numbers of coliforms by themselves
are not significant, but accompanied by background growth of unidenti-
fied types and perhaps by viruses, these microorganisms could become
a health problem.  Besides careful disinfection, regular monitoring
of coliforms has been identified as a definite requirement of any
water reuse system.  Recycle water use records were destroyed in the
fire.  However, computations based on the number of loads washed,
showers taken, etc., indicate that water was reused in the laundry about
2-1/2 times before final treatment and discharge.


In the absence of a vehicular blackwater collection system, the only
toilet wastes available for incineration were from the six recirculating
chemical toilets in the public section of the plant.  Mixed with water
treatment sludges, these were vacuum collected and fed into the incin-
erator via a positive displacement pump.  Liquid-solids separation
caused some clogging of the feed pipe.  Fuel required to incinerate
the blackwater-sludge mixture was about 1 gallon per 4 gallons treated.


To conserve fuel, the incinerator had been designed to serve as the
main source of heat.  This was accomplished by incorporating a large
heat exchanger in the exhaust system.  A 400,000 BTU/hr liquid phase
heater (Singer VaPower) served as an auxiliary unit.  As a result of
the initial limited demand for the incinerator,  the Singer VaPower
unit became the prime source of heat.  Once numerous startup diffi-
culties had been overcome (caused mainly by high moisture of the fuel
atomizing air), the unit performed excellently.



                            CD   CHEMICAL
                            ^2 ADDITION 8
                              Q  MIXING
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                                                   SLUDGE  F&R  RE-TREATMENT
      Figure 11.  Original  Wastewater Treatment Plant - Wainwright AVDP




                                                                         OTHER PROCESSES

o m
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CC h-
              < 9

                                  CO U_

                                                                LU Q
                                                                I Q
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                                                                EXTENDED FLOW PATH  TO
                                                              1    ALTERNATE
                                                              ,	POINTS FOR

                                                              "- -ADDITION
Figure 12.  Modified Wastewater Treatment Plant - Vlainwright AVDP
                                                                                . HOMES



                                                                                B 1 A

                                                                                 OTHER PROCESSES

                             TABLE 1

                               Raw     P-C      Carbon
                              Gray-   Plant     Column   Reduction
                              Water  Effluent  Effluent  Percentage
Color, PCU
Turbidity, JTU
COD, mg/1
Total Solids, mg/1
Suspended Solids, mg/1
Total Volatile Solids, mg/1
Volatile Susp. Solids, mg/1
Heat for the dryers and public areas in the facility was provided
by circulating "Therminol 55" heat transfer medium in welded piping.
However, small leaks existed in the piping which prevented operation
of the heating system at optimum temperature of about 350F.  Above
230F, oil from leaks vaporized, causing bothersome and possibly hazar-
dous contamination of in-plant air.  Some of the leaks were too inacces-
sible to reach.  Others came from the few threaded fittings in the system,
which, despite repeated efforts, could not be made tight.


The washers performed without problems.  Due to the limitations of
the heating system referred to above, the dryers operated below
optimum temperature.  Therefore, during periods of peak demand, back-
logs of wet laundry accumulated.  The pneumatically operated Monogram
toilets (Model 160M-PA) proved to be difficult to operate and maintain.

During the 8 months of facility operation (March-October 1973), people
in Wainwright took 4650 showers or about 2 showers per person per month.
4370 loads of laundry were washed and dried representing about 2 loads
of laundry per household per week.   25,000 gallons of water were sold
at the plant and individually transported to most of the 65 homes.

Service charges were as follows:

               Shower, 2 minutes                25 cents

               Load of wash                     50 cents

               Dryer, unit time                 10 cents

               Drinking water, per gal.          3 cents

               Sauna                            Free

     Plant income for the period was $5,700

After the fire, village water consumption climbed steadily, despite
a City Council decision in February 1974, to raise water prices  from
3 cents to 6 cents per gallon for water sold at the tank.  The charge
for water delivered to homes via the Bombardier all-terrain tanker
vehicles, which became available in mid-February 1974, was set at 8
cents per gallon.  In May 1975, the price of water delivered to
institutions such as the school and businesses was increased to  6
cents per gallon, on the assumption that these institutions could
better afford to pay closer to the real cost of the service than the
average householder at Wainwright.

Consumption of water appears to have been unaffected by these changes
in cost.  It has risen steadily, taking a quantum jump when the  tanker
vehicle began to make deliveries in February 1974.  Peak demand  in the
homes occurs during the months of June through September.  This  may
be due to some households continuing to obtain some of their water
from ice during the winter.  The history of water sales at Wainwright
is graphically shown in Figure 13.

Since November 1973, the facility has been operated by the City  Council
under the cost-reimbursable contract referred to in Section IV.  During
the first 22 months of the contract period, total expenditures have
been $77,000.  This figure does not include fuel which has been  shipped
via the Alaska Air Command COOL Barge.  Income was $29,000 for the same
period; $21,700 from sale of water and $7,300 for hauling wastewater
from the school.

                                              	 TO HOUSEHOLDS
        M A M J J A S O ND J F MA MJ J A SO ND J F MA MJ J A S O N D
              1973                 1974                  1975
    Figure 13.  Water Sales at Wainwright

                            SECTION VI

Equipment and operational problems have been frequent at Emmonak.
These problems stemmed from deficiencies in the original contractor's
performance and from the need to maintain basic services while trying
to modify systems and bring the facility to completion.  By March
1975, work had sufficiently progressed to permit facility performance
monitoring to begin.

Instrumentation installed for data collection included:

     Hour meters on pump and process equipment motors to
     obtain operating time and energy requirements;

     Flow meters and temperature indicators on heating
     system lines to obtain heat requirement information;

     Watt hour meter on blackwater system for energy

     Water meters to obtain total water production, hot
     water requirements, etc.

Readings from the above are routinely recorded by the operators on a
weekly operations summary form.  Laundry and shower use and water
sales are also shown on the form.

Sampling for performance monitoring was done by the AVDP staff.  Field
chemistry, including analysis for hardness, alkalinity, conductivity,
and turbidity, was accomplished on site the same day the samples were
collected.  For solids analysis a procedure was followed whereby dishes
and filters were pre-weighed at the Arctic Environmental Research Sta-
tion laboratory before shipment to Emmonak.  Samples for analysis of
solids were then filtered and dryed and held in a dry state for return
to the AERS laboratory for final drying and weighing.  This procedure
provided minimum degradating of the samples and eliminated the need
to maintain delicate laboratory equipment at Emmonak.

Because of the remoteness of the village, grab samples were collected
daily during those periods when AVDP staff were on site.  On the day
of collection those portions of samples intended for COD and nutrient
analysis were frozen, solids samples were filtered and dryed, and
color samples were cooled.  These samples were held at the site for
periods up to a week before return to the AERS laboratory for analy-
sis.  A limited number of BOD analyses were done on graywater samples
collected on the days before returning to the AERS laboratory.


The water supply system is shown schematically in Figure 14.  Raw water
is pumped from the Yukon River by a 1-hp submersible pump.  In summer
the pump is suspended from a raft and in winter it is suspended through
a hole in the ice and covered with a heated enclosure.

The submersible pump replaced two centrifugal pumps which originally
had been installed in a small heated hut on the bank above the river.
For a variety of reasons, these pumps would not hold prime.  The pres-
ent arrangement, although of somewhat makeshift nature, has the desir-
able aspect of avoiding placement of permanent obstructions in the river
bed or the bank and has performed satisfactorily.

The choice of the Yukon River as the source of raw water was made after
reviewing available information regarding ground water at Emmonak.
Wells constructed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs produced water of
high organic content and saltwater beyond a certain depth.  The river
water has been relatively easy to treat.

Potable water treatment is accomplished with a package unit manufac-
tured by Keystone Engineering, Inc.  of Seattle, Washington.  The plant
has been in operation since November 1972 and has functioned well with
a minimum of operator attention.  Treatment consists of alum coagula-
tion, multi-media filtration and chlorination.  The rated capacity of
the plant is 10 gallons per minute (gpm).  Actual capacity has been
about 7-1/2 gpm.

During the period March-October 1972, an average of 4,400 gallons of
water was produced per day.  Production peaks of 8,700 gal/day and
7,400 gal/day have been registered over 1-week periods.  Water re-
quired for filter backwash amounts to about 4-1/2 percent of the total
product and is not included in this  figure.  As presently operated,
the plant has a capacity of 10,000 gal/day if 2 hours are allowed for
down time.

Chlorine residual  and pH are monitored by the operators on a daily
basis and membrane filter tests for total coliforms are conducted on
a monthly basis.  Chlorine residuals in the distribution system (with-
in the facility) are normally maintained at 0.1 mg/1.  Coliform tests
on potable water within the facility have been negative.

The results of raw water and potable water sampling are summarized in
Table 2.   The variation between winter and summer raw water quality
has had very little effect on treatment plant performance.  The high
summer silt load requires that the raw water holding tank be cleaned
each fall.   Approximately 6-8 inches of silt collects in the flat
bottom tank throughout the summer.  The high summer silt load also
necessitates cleaning of the treatment plant clearwell on a weekly or
biweekly basis, compared to a monthly cleaning during the winter.

                                                              WATER TREATMENT PLANT
                                                         SODA ASH"
                                             FLOW CONTROL
                                                 ,FRCU CEST^AL
                                                 f HEATING SYSTEM
                                       2000 gal.
                                      RAW WATER
                                                                                                6000 gal.
                                                                                             POTABLE  WATER
                                                                                              STORAGE TANK
                                                               BACKWASH WATER
                                                               TO SUMP
                                                     DRY PIPE
                             AUXILIARY HEAT
                             TRACE HX & PUMP
                                 FIRE PUMP
                                 94 gpm 9 4Opsi
                                                                            COLD WATER

                                              IN-PLANT DISTRIBUTION

                                                   INDIVIDUAL PICKUP-^3

                                                    HOME DELIVERY-
                                                                                         BIA SCHOOL

                                                                                         COMMUNITY CENTER

   Figure  14.   Water System at Emmonak.

                               TABLE 2


# Samples
Conductivity, UMHO
Turbidity, JTU
Suspended Solids, mg/1
Hardness, mg/1, CaC03
Color, PCU

# Samples
Turbidity, JTU
Total Solids, mg/1
Suspended Solids, mg/1
Hardness, mg/1 CaCO
Color, PCU
Winter Sampling Period
Raw Water
350 (56)
16 (13)
3.5 (2)
168 (17)
4 (2)
Summer Sampling Period
Raw Water
190 (13)
118 (42)
275 (42)
148 (21)
110 (22)
36 (5)

Potable Water
430 (86)
2.8 (1.7)3
3 (2.7)3
168 (20)
0 (0)

Potable Water
290 (29)
3.0 (2.5)3
197 (35)
4.3 (3.9)2
131 (35)
4.0 (l.O)3
      value with standard deviation in parenthesis
2Range of values
3Mean and standard deviation obtained from probability plot

 Chemical  use inthe production of 860,000 gallons of water, plus back-
 as follows"-'      9     monitorin9 Period (March-October 1975) has been
           A1um                                540 pounds
           Soda Ash                            265 pounds
           Polymer                              45 pounds
           Sodium Hypochlorite                  23 gallons
 Energy consumption per gallon of water produced is  estimated  as  follows:
                                           Watt Hours/Gallon
           Raw Water Pump                      0.5
           Potable Water Treatment             2.0
           Pressure  Distribution               3.8
                    Total                     6.3
The potable water treatment value includes power required to operate the
feed pump, chemical  mixers  and feed pumps, backwash pump and the treat-
ment plant effluent  pump.
Tempering of the water and  maintaining  it above freezing temperatures in
the utiliduct requires much higher levels of energy.   These have been
calculated in BTU's/gallon  of potable water produced and translated
into equivalent watt hours/gallon:
                                   BTU/Gallon       Watt Hour/Gallon
           Tempering                  217                   52
           Utiliduct Heating          143                   42
           Tempering                   25                    6
            Utiliduct  Heating          
 The values  shown for  tempering  are based on  raising  the river water temper-
 ature to 58 F which has  been  found to be the year-round temperature
 of water in the distribution  system.  The utiliduct  heating value  was
 obtained by using one-half the  BTU heating requirement to  maintain the
 utiliduct above freezing.


The graywater treatment plant is also a package unit manufactured by
Keystone Engineering, Inc. (Figure 15).  Treatment consists of alum
coagulation, powdered activated carbon (PAC) adsorption, clarification,
multi-media filtration and chlorination.   Chemicals and PAC are fed along
with the waste to four coagulation cells  where mixing takes place.  The
cells are connected in series by a pipe attached to the bottom of one cell
and rising on the inside of the next cell to about two-thirds of the height
of that cell.

Waste flows from the fourth cell into the clarification chamber where the
chemical solids settle out.  The waste then flows over a multi-media fil-
ter, which removes the remaining solids,  and is pumped from the bottom
of the filter into the clearwell and then pumped to the river.  Sodium
hypochlorite is fed to the waste over the filter, with the clearwell ser-
ving as a disinfection contact chamber.

Chemical sludge is pumped by an air operated diaphragm pump from the
bottom of the clarification chamber over  the moving bed filter which
dewaters the sludge.  Filtrate from the moving bed filter is returned
to the graywater holding tank and the sludge is removed to a landfill
or incinerated.

Backwash of the multi-media filter is performed manually once each day
with backwash water returned to the graywater holding tank.

The graywater consists of laundry, shower and sink waste from within the
facility as well as shower and sink waste from the community center, and
laundry, shower and kitchen of the BIA school.  Also, whenever blackwater
is being treated, blackwater centrate from the centrifuge is added to the
graywater tank.  In the future, laundry,  shower and kitchen wastes will be
collected from the new high school, and kitchen wastes will be collected
from a restaurant at the community center.

The graywater treatment plant was not operated continuously during the
monitoring period due to certain operational problems.  Powdered activa-
ted carbon has not been used in the graywater treatment process to date,
nor has pH adjustment been provided, but are planned in the future.

Design capacity of the plant is 10 gpm.  During the periods of continuous
operation, the plant averaged approximately 7.5 gpm.  A daily average of
3,400 gallons were treated during the monitoring period which represents
about 8 hours of daily operation at 7.5 gpm.  Limited capacity for stor-
age of graywater and plant shutdowns for  maintenance result in about 8
hours of enforced idle time per day.  Therefore, the plant was operating
at approximately 50 percent of full capacity (7,000 gal/day).  A peak
load of approximately 6,000 gal/day occurred during one weekly reporting
period with the next highest peak load being 4,000 gal/day.

Laundry and shower waste samples were collected in the facility for
characterization (Table 3).  The flow rate of laundry waste was


                                                                                                                            FROM CENTRAL
                                                                                                                            HEATING SYSTEM
                BLACKWATER  SUMPS
             COLLECTION     TOILETS
                   LAUNDRY. SHOWER. SINK WASTES
                                                                                              WATER TREATMENT PLANT BACKWASH WATER
                                                                                       GRAYWATER  PLANT  BYPASS
 P A C
                                                                                                 GRAYWATER TREATMENT PLANT-
                                                    EUC GRAYWATER
                 GRAYWATER SUMPS
      Figure 15.   Graywater  and  Blackwater System  at Emmonak.

                                                        TABLE 3

Number o
Laundry 13
Shower 9
Graywater 26
Treated Gray- 24
water Composite
Percent Removal
Graywater 19
Treated Gray- 18
water Adjusted
i) TT


Sol Ids
Suspended Suspended COO
Sol Ids Solids COO Soluble TPOiP OPOjP
ma/1 ma/l M/1 ma/1 ma/1 MG/1

NH3N Alkalinity
ma/1 9/l
6. 2
Percent Removal
37   79
         1.  Mean with standard deviation In parenthesis.
         i.  In a limited number of cases, actual  numbers of analysis for a given parameter may be 1 or 2 less than the number of samples shown.
         3.  Range of values.

obtained by multiplying the number of washer loads by the gallons of
water required per load.  Shower flow rates were obtained by multiply-
ing the number of showers by a factor of 20.  The respective rates are
as follows:

                                     Average      Peak
                                     Gal/Day     Gal/Day

               Laundry                 800         1670

               Shower                  780         1330

One problem encountered in operating the graywater plant was the extreme
variability of raw waste.  Two factors accounted for the variability:
(1) the highly concentrated centrate from the centrifuge flowing into
the graywater holding tank while processing blackwater, and (2) a
buildup of chemical solids in the graywater holding tank from the fil-
ter backwash and the passage of solids through the moving bed filter
with the filtrate.  These two factors tended to upset the plant perfor-
mance and drastically lowered the effluent quality.

Because of these influences, the performance data are presented in two
sets (Table 3).  The composite values show the overall performance of
the plant, and in this case, no attempt was made to adjust the data be-
cause of inconsistencies, etc.  A second set of adjusted values was
obtained by first plotting the raw graywater total solids analysis on
probability paper.  The plot distinctly indicated that two groups of
data were present.  The adjusted graywater and adjusted treated gray-
water data summary was then obtained from samples taken on the dates
corresponding to the set of the low total solids data on the graywater
probability plot.  This procedure was followed in order to screen out
the effects of the blackwater centrate and high chemical solids in the
graywater feed on plant performance.

The variability of the composite data is reduced considerably by the
removal of the centrate and high solids influence.  Although the per-
centage removals of the composite and adjusted data are similar, the
quality of the effluent is increased considerably and the variability
reduced for the adjusted data.  The adjusted data shows that the plant
does not yet meet secondary standards.

The addition of PAC to the process should aid in attaining that goal.
Meeting secondary standards in the treatment of the graywater-centrate
combination will also require that the dilution factor be increased by
metering the centrate at lower rates, that pH be accurately controlled,
and that plant upsets be prevented.  All of this will require constant
operator attention.

Results of sludge analysis were as follows:

 Chemical  Sludge

 Filter  Sludge

                  No. of    Percent  Volatile
                  Samples   Solids    Sol ids





 Thermal  Value BTU/lb.

4620 (Avg. of 2 samples)

4430 (1 sample)
 Since  only  one  sample of filtrate was obtained, definite conclusions on
 the  performance of the moving bed filter cannot be made.  The result
 agrees with the observations that a large amount of sludge was passing
 through  the filter and back into the graywater system.

 A  limited number of Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) analyses were per-
 formed on the graywater samples.  Although the BOD test is held in low
 regard by many  people in the sanitary field and has little value in
 monitoring  a chemical treatment process, it was felt some BOD information
 would  be useful.  The graywater BOD values could be useful in the design
 of biological treatment processes and, when considered in conjunction
 with other  parameters such as COD and solids, BOD values permit a much
 more comprehensive description of the waste.  The treated graywater BOD
 is very  helpful in determining the effects a waste will have on the re-
 ceiving  water since it is the only measure of biodegradeability available.
 Following are the COD/BOD ratios for those samples which were tested for
           No.  of

     Treated Graywater


Total coliform counts of six treated graywater samples averaged 2,000/
100 ml and ranged from 0 to 5,000/100 ml.  These results indicated that
disinfection of treated graywater will be effective once stable opera-
tion of the plant is achieved.

Operation and maintenance time cannot be estimated accurately because
of problems with the plant, continuing modifications and an inability
of the operators to spend the necessary time with the plant.  The plant
will probably require twice the time it takes to look after the water
plant, or approximately 40 hours per week.

Chemical  use in the treatment of 145,000 gallons of graywater during
the monitoring period was as follows:


                    Sodium Hypochlorite

                         872  pounds

                          13  pounds

                          30  gallons

The power needed to operate the graywater plant is estimated at 4.3
watt hours per gallon.  This figure includes power requirements for
the graywater sump pump, treatment, and pumping the effluent back to
the river.

Operation and maintenance problems included:

          A buildup of solids in the graywater holding tank
          of up to 12 inches which requires cleaning twice
          each year.  The tank has a flat bottom.

          Clogging of the coagulation cells which requires
          draining the clarifier before cleaning.

          A rolling action which occurs in the clarifier and
          upsets the  solids settling process.  This action is
          induced by  temperature differences between the in-
          coming waste and the liquid in the clarifier and by
          the configuration of the clarifier inlet.

          Rapid buildup of solids in the clarifier when pro-
          cessing high strength wastes, resulting in a carry-
          over and ultimate failure of the filter.

          Buildup of  gumballs (balls formed by the agglomera-
          tion of solid material by the polymer) in the filter

          Lack of operator time available to give the plant
          the almost  constant attention it requires.

Numerous remedies and modifications have been attempted; others are

          A centrifugal pump to transfer chemical sludge from
          the bottom  of the clarifier to the moving bed filter
          was originally furnished.  Because of clogging prob-
          lems the pump was replaced with a gravity overflow
          arrangement.  The gravity overflow proved difficult
          to control  and was in turn replaced with an air opera-
          ted diaphragm pump which has been very satisfactory.

          A basket screen has been placed in the graywater sump
          to prevent  objects such as socks, washrags, etc., from
          clogging the sump pump or entering the holding tank.
          A screen was not originally provided.

          An air scour was added to the multi-media filter for
          use during  backwash to aid in breaking up and pre-
          venting formation of the gumballs.  The efficiency of
          the air scour has not yet been determined.

          Plant piping was modified to allow use of the
          clearwell as a disinfection chamber.  Originally,
          the clearwell was used for storage of backwash
          water only.  A contact chamber for disinfection
          of treated graywater was not provided with the
          original plant.

          A new container for collection of moving bed filter
          paper and sludge has been provided.  The container
          originally provided was very bulky, required two
          people to handle it, and made it practically impos-
          sible to get material into the incinerator.

          During processing of blackwater, a very strong odor
          emanates from the graywater sump.  The odor is from
          the chemicals (used in the chemical toilets) present
          in the centrifuge centrate.  An exhaust blower will
          be installed to control the odor.

          Additional space has been provided for mixing and
          handling graywater chemicals.  Dust control equip-
          ment is being installed in the new space.  The plant
          will be operated using PAC and pH adjustment.

          Control of centrate concentration in the graywater
          feed will be attempted.

          The discharge configuration from the coagulation cells
          to the clarifier will be modified in an attempt to
          improve the clarifier performance.

          Aeration mixing will be installed in the graywater
          holding tank to prevent sludge buildup.


A schematic of the blackwater system is included in Figure 10.  The black-
water is collected in a 500-gallon fiberglass tank with a dished bottom.
A Moyno positive displacement pump (Model  1L4-CDQ), with a 1-hp DC vari-
able speed drive, feeds the centrifuge.  The bowl-type centrifuge (Model
125 by Leon J.  Barrett Company) has a manual scoop, is powered by a 2-hp
motor, and has  a maximum capacity of 45 gpm.  From the centrifuge, sludge
is transferred  to the incinerator by a second Moyno pump (Model 1M3-CDQ)
which is powered by a 1/2-hp AC motor with variable speed drive.  The
incinerator,  a  Type IV by Northeast Burnzol, Inc., is oil fired with a
gas pilot and rated 60 pounds of sludge per hour.

The sludge feed consists of a 3/8-inch pipe stub placed over the flame
area.   The burner has a modulating control with a maximum fuel consump-
tion of 12 gallons per hour.

The heat exchanger for recovery of waste heat from the incinerator flue
gas is a Maxim  Model  MFT-140-4 by Riley Beaird.   A Model  142-3 blower


by the New York Blower Company serves as an induced draft fan for the
heat exchanger.

Current sources of blackwater are the BIA school, the community center
and the toilets within the plant.  At this time, the blackwater consists
of chemical toilet wastes and, in the case of the community center, flush
urinal waste.  Future sources of blackwater will be from homes through a
honey bucket receiving station and the high school which will be sending
blackwater to the facility through a utiliduct.

Blackwater collection rates have been as follow:

               BIA School                          26 gpd

               Community Center                    26 gpd

               In-Plant                            15 gpd

The collection rates for the BIA school and community center are prelimi-
nary since they are based on information during startup of the systems
when problems unrelated to the utility center collection and treatment
processes were occurring.

Grab samples were taken from the blackwater holding tank at random times
during blackwater processing and analyzed.  The results from seven samp-
les were as follows:

               pH, range                            6.6-8.9

               Total Solids, mg/1                   8,550

               Total Volatile Solids, mg/1          6,000

               Chemical Oxygen Demand, mg/1         8,350

This information must also be considered preliminary since extensive
settling takes place in the holding tank and no mixing is provided.

Observations made in connection with performance of the centrifuge
illustrate the extent to which settling occurs  (Table 4).  Blackwater
had been collected on August 6, 1975, the day before the centrifuge
operation began, which permitted solids to settle overnight.  The cen-
trifuge operated for a short period on August 7, 1975, and was started
up again on August 8, 1975.  Additional solids settled overnight as
indicated in the table.  Blackwater was not collected during that period.

Obviously, a major portion of the solids, including those which could be
removed by the centrifuge, are settling to the bottom of the holding tank.
The liquid is then channelling through the sludge until the level of the
liquid reaches the sludge level and suspended solids begin flowing out of
the tank with the liquid.

The centrifuge removed a negligible portion of the soilds in the upper
liquid levels in spite of the low feed rate.  At the lower liquid levels


                            TABLE 4

                    OF BLACKWATER AT EMMONAK
Holding Tank Liquid Level,
Centrifuge Feed Rate, gpm
Total Solids, Blackwater, mg/1
Total Solids, Centrate, mg/1
Percent Removal
Suspended Solids, Blackwater mg/1
Suspended Solids, Centrate, mg/1
Percent Removal
Chemical Oxygen Demand, Black-
water, mg/1
Chemical Oxygen Demand, Cen-
trate, mg/1
Percent Removal
41 ,000
the high concentration of solids in the feed appeared to reduce cen-
trifuge efficiency.   The data indicates that a feed rate of less than 1
gpm is required at very high solids concentrations.

A sludge sample was  taken from the sludge collection hopper near the end
of the operation.   Results of the analysis were as follows:

            Percent Solids                     13

            Percent Volatile Solids            71

            Thermal  Value, BTU/lb dried mater-
              ial                             6800

It has been observed that the intervals between desludging of the cen-
trifuge must not be too long.  Otherwise the bowl packs too tight and


difficulties occur in transferring the dry sludge to the incinerator
via the hopper, the Moyno pump and the piping.

Since the blackwater flow to the holding tank is still low enough to
permit processing the day after collection, the current procedure is
to hold the blackwater overnight, which allows solids to settle.  On
the next day, the upper layer of blackwater is pumped directly to the
graywater sump, by passing the centrifuge, until the level in the hold-
ing tank is down to about 10 inches.  About once a week the sludge which
builds up in the bottom of the holding tank is dewatered by using the
centrifuge.  Towards the end of this process, when the remainder of the
sludge in the tank is so concentrated that use of the centrifuge becomes
impractical, this thick material is then pumped directly to the sludge
hopper, and from there to the incinerator.  This procedure has reduced
centrifuge operating time substantially.

Power and fuel oil requirements for treatment of blackwater by this
method have been calculated as follows:

          43 watt hours per gallon blackwater

          30 gallons blackwater treated per gallon of fuel
          consumed in the incinerator.

These figures are based on 500 gallons of blackwater per week.  As the
amount of blackwater increases, the process will become more economical.

The heat exchanger associated with the incinerator is connected to the
heating system in series with the boiler so that heat recovered from the
incinerator flue gas is transferred to the circulating hot water.  The
system is valved so that boiler water is circulated through the heat
exchanger only when the incinerator and flue gas fan are in operation.
The circulating hot water is split into two loops before entering the
heat exchanger.  One loop is connected to a heat exchanger in the raw
water tank which provides additional cooling of the circulating water
while tempering the raw water.  The additional cooling of the circulating
water increases efficiency of the heat exchanger.

A preliminary evaluation of the heat recovery system has been completed.
The results indicate that approximately 25 percent of the net heat in-
put to the incinerator can be recovered and that the heat exchanger
recovered 96 percent of the heat in the flue gas that was drawn through
it.  The heat exchanger and flue gas fan were designed for installation
with a different incinerator than was furnished and therefore are
undersized.  By installing a larger capacity fan it is estimated that
heat recovery could be increased to 50 percent with the existing unit.

Some equipment defects and operational problems have complicated the
use of the heat exchanger and incinerator.  Because the flue gas fan
is very noisy, it was installed outside of the building.  A heated
enclosure has become necessary to keep the fan belts from stiffening.


At low temperatures they place an excessive load on the motor.  In the
incinerator the bottom refractory material has developed cracks which
allow liquid to seep through.  Attempts at patching have not remedied
the situation.  Carbon steel pans to hold the sludge puddle are cur-
rently being evaluated.

The equipment provided for blackwater treatment at Emmonak is obviously
expensive, and the operating costs are high.   At locations where sani-
tary landfills are feasible, the blackwater treatment process could be
simplified considerably.  Blackwater solids separation, for instance,
could take place in a settling tank.  The liquid could be decanted and
the sludge disinfected by mixing with lime in the same tank or another
holding tank which is emptied to the landfill.  Where a shredding pro-
cess is used for other garbage, the sludge could be mixed with the
shredded material.  This would eliminate much costly equipment, and be
a less energy intensive method of accomplishing the job.

Future plans in reference to blackwater and solid waste processing t
Emmonak include the following:

          To collect trash and garbage for incineration.  Evalua-
          tion will include a determination of garbage and trash
          characteristics, amounts generated  and heat recovery
          possibilities during incineration of the material.

          To install and evaluate a trash compactor.

          Attempts will be made to improve the performance of
          the heat recovery system including  improvement of the
          flue gas fan operation.

          Additional information will  be collected on blackwater
          quantities and characteristics.


Sources of heat in the Emmonak facility are a boiler of 472,000 BTU/hr
gross output, two sauna burners, and the incinerator.  A primary hot
water circulating system furnishes heat to the dryers, the hot water
tank, three unit heaters located beneath the  building, a heating and
ventilating system within the building and heat exchangers for tempering
raw water and heating ethylene glycol  for the utiliduct heat trace.
The incinerator is connected to the circulating hot water system through
the flue gas  heat exchanger discussed  previously.

Fuel  is stored in a 20,000-gallon  tank which  is filled annually.   Fuel
consumption during the past year has been 22,260 gallons, distributed
as follows:

              Unit               Gallons          Percent of Total
          Boiler                 18,480                  83

          Men's Sauna             1,745                   7.8

          Women's Sauna           1,420                   6.4

          Incinerator               615                   2.8

Fuel consumption in the boiler ranged from 490 gallons per week during
the winter to 220 gallons per week in the summer.  The boiler burner
operated about 75 percent of the time in winter and 57 percent in
summer.  Peak demands have kept the boiler running for 90 percent of
the time for short periods.

The saunas are operated about 8 hours per day.  Little change in fuel
consumption was noted between summer and winter.  The men's sauna ther-
mostat is normally set at around 250F compared to the women's thermostat
setting of 170F, which accounts for the higher men's sauna fuel con-
sumption.  The sauna stoves are undersized for the burners.  This has
resulted in a somewhat greater fuel consumption than necessary.  The
incinerator was operated for a relatively short period of time during
the evaluation which accounts for the small percentage of fuel consump-
tion.  This figure will rise considerably in the future.

Assuming the fuel has a heating value of 19,000 BTU/lb, and the operating
efficiencies of the boiler and sauna stoves are 70 percent and 60 per-
cent respectively, daily heat requirements have been computed as follows:

                                        Winter        Summer
                Function                BTU/Day       BTU/Day

          Hot Water Heater              613,000        613,000

          Cold Water Tempering          451,000         52,000

          Utiliduct Heat Trace        1,260,000

          Dryers                        833,000        833,000

          Space Heating               3,826,000      1,637,000

          Saunas                        692,000        692,000
                          Total       7,675,000      3,827,000

Heat recovery during incinerator operation has not been included in the
above computation.  As the use of the incinerator is increased, the load
on the boiler will be reduced.  Overall fuel consumption is expected to
increase, however, because the heat recovery system is only 25 percent


Cold water temperatures in the distribution system are about 58F
throughout the year.  The heat requirements calculated for cold water
tempering are based on heating the incoming raw water to 58F.  This
is not done directly but occurs as the water picks up heat after en-
tering the building.

The source of heat for the dryers is the boiler water which flows
through a coil at the dryer air intake.  The moisture laden air from
the dryers is then exhausted from the building.

The space heating figures given in the above table were obtained by
subtracting the values of the other functions  (excluding the saunas)
from the total.  The values include heat given up by heat exchangers,

Several methods of heating the utiliduct have been tried.  Originally,
the utiliduct was provided with electric heat tapes.  A number of
freezeups occurred during the first winter because these heat tapes

An  effective  interim method of keeping the utiliduct warm and the river
intake from freezing was to bleed tempered raw water back through the
intake line.

Bleeding tempered raw water back to the river was quite wasteful of
heat and, therefore, an ethylene glycol heat trace was installed.  The
ethylene glycol is pumped through a heat exchanger in the facility, which
raises the glycol temperature to 125F, and then through a pipe which is
looped through the utiliduct.  At first, this trace consisted of 1/2-inch
polypropylene plastic which is inexpensive and easily installed.  Because
of  breakage problems at the joints, the polypropylene was subsequently
replaced with PVC which is believed to be more reliable and allows the
glycol to circulate at a higher temperature.  This trace remains to be
extended through the section of the utiliduct leading from the river
bank to the intake on the ice.  Therefore, some bleeding of tempered
water is still necessary; hence, the amount of heat used in the utiliduct
now may be reduced by half after the heat trace is completed.


Electrical power at Emmonak is supplied by the Alaska Village Electric
Cooperative,  Inc. (AVEC) which serves numerous villages in Western
Alaska.  Generators are provided in each village.  Power available in
Emmonak is 120 volts, single phase and 208 volts three phase.

Because of limited resources available at AVEC and the remoteness of
the village, electric power has not been dependable.  A number of motors
within the AVDP facility have required repair or replacement because of
fluctuating voltages.  In one instance, a break in one leg of the three
phase power lines leading to the facility apparently resulted in a
surge of high voltage in the other legs.  A number of transformers
were damaged which resulted in the loss of the heating system as well
as other process equipment until repairs could be made.


As a result of these experiences and because of the potential for
damage that exists should a prolonged power outage occur during cold
weather, two major modifications were made.  A standby generator and
a low voltage protection service entrance panel was installed.  The
generator is a 55 KW unit which was made available by the Bureau of
Indian Affairs.  The new panel is rated at 400 amps and has low voltage
protection with a time delay to prevent tripping from momentary low
voltages.  The panel also has single phase protection to guard against
loss of power in just one leg of the feeder lines.

Electric power consumption by the facility has increased from a
monthly average of 6,740 KWH during the first year of operation to
9,630 KWH during the past year.  The average winter load from December
through March was 12,930 KWH/month and the average summer load from June
through August was 5700 KWH/month.  The higher power consumption during
the past year is attributed to increased facility use and the completion
of the blackwater treatment room, startup of the incinerator and the
initiation of blackwater treatment.


Interior fire protection includes an alarm system, a dry pipe sprinkler
system and fire extinguishers placed throughout the building.  The alarm
system consists of bells located at various points to warn people in the
building in case of a fire and a siren on the roof to alert nearby resi-
dents during hours when the building is unoccupied.  The bells and siren
may be activated by manual pull stations or heat detectors.

Because of the small capacity of the raw water tank and the impracti-
cality of providing enough water storage to meet fire protection require-
ments, a special fire pump-raw water pump connection has been provided
(Figure 9).  The fire pump and the dry valve are connected by a motori-
zed valve to the raw water tank.  Opening of a sprinkler head and release
of compressed air from the sprinkler piping activates the fire pump.
Initially, this pump draws water from raw water storage.  As the water
level in the raw water tank drops, a level switch activates the river
pump which begins to pump into the raw water tank.  This clears the
intake line of air.  After the raw water level drops further, a second
level switch simultaneously activates two motorized valves so that the
river pump and the fire pump are now pumping in series.

A test of this system indicated the output of the fire pump was in-
creased slightly when pumping in series with the river pump compared
to pumping directly from the tank.

The exterior fire protection equipment is shown schematically in Figure
16.  The pump is stored in a warm shelter near the river.  If a fire
occurs, the pump is taken down to the river and the suction hose connected
to the pump.  In the winter, the suction hose may be inserted through the
ice at the raw water intake or a new hole must be cut in the ice.  The
fire hose is stored on hose carts in an unheated enclosure, also near the

            20' SUCTION HOSE
            AND STRAINER
                       _f r
                        700' LONG
              37gpm  ISOpsi
Figure 16.  Exterior Fire Protection at Emmonak
river.  The fire hose is unreeled from  the  hose  carts  between the
river and the fire and connected to the  pump.  Two  nozzles were sup-
plied so that a fire can be attacked from two  angles.   The system has
been tested successfully in the summer  but  has not  undergone a winter


The original building at Emmonak consisted  of  six  prefabricated modules
whose interior dimensions are about 7 feet  high, 8  feet wide, and 36
feet long.  They were placed on a wooden pad foundation and elevated
4 feet above the ground level by steel  supports  to  avoid damage from
flooding.  Drains and sumps were installed  beneath  the floor of the
modules, and the support structure was  skirted to  keep these from
freezing.  This arrangement has several  very undesirable aspects,
which, together with remedial measures  taken,  should be mentioned.

Primary among the problems experienced  was  differential frost heaving
under the foundation.  The ground at the periphery  of  the building,
beneath the outside edges of the' foundation pads,  rose 6 to 8 inches
above the unfrozen ground under the center  of  the  building.  Breaks
in the piping occurred and considerable  jacking  and leveling became
necessary to relieve the strain.

This difficulty has been corrected by shifting the  foundation pads
30 inches from the periphery towards the center  of  the building.  The
steel support structure was modified to  accomodate  the relocation of
the pads.  To reduce heat losses, skirting  of  higher insulating value
was installed in such a manner to accomodate ground movements by
sliding against the side of the building.

Prefabricated building modules had been  selected,  in part, because
they would permit installation of mechanical and electrical compo-
nents at the factory, which appeared to be  a major  opportunity for

                                                   TABLE  5

                                       EMMONAK  FACILITY USE  AND INCOME


Washers, loads
Dryers, time units
Baths, men
Baths, ladies
Income from all services,
including sale of water:
a. To village residents
b. To institutions
c. Total
March 73-March 74

$ 1,954
March 74-March 75
6, 131

April -September



reducing total facility costs.  In practice, this was offset somewhat
by the fact that equipment such as heat exchangers came loose during
the shipment and much repiping was required after arrival on site.

The small size and compactness of the building modules complicated
operation and maintenance.  Eventually, several annexes and additional
structures had to be provided to accommodate all necessary functions.

In future facilities of this nature, floor construction requires more
careful attention.  The floors consisted of 2 x 4 joists resting on two
steel "I" beams running the length of the building, with plywood on top
of the joists.  The floor covering is steel or linoleum.  After 3 years
of operation, the floors in the shower areas, the treatment module and
the mechanical room have begun to rot because of exposure to moisture.
In the treatment module, the floor had to be reinforced to prevent fail-

In the laundry, substantial modifications of the floor structure were
required in mounting a 25-pound capacity washer-extractor.  This type
of equipment is especially suitable for cleaning sleeping bags, quilts,
and bulky clothing, and, therefore, highly popular in the village.
Because the clothes drum of this unit rotates on a horizontal axis, the
machine vibrated the building to such an extent that it could not be
operated.  Eventually, a solution was devised by hanging a heavy weight
under the building in the area beneath the machine.


The central community facility at Emmonak has become an institution
of importance to the people of Emmonak.  They hold in high regard the
men who run the plant and place considerable value on the services it
provides.  The villagers have demonstrated this by their willingness
to pay for these services at rates which are equal to, and in reference
to some categories, vastly exceed the price paid by Americans elsewhere
for their basic water-related needs.

In the eyes of the villagers, the most important services provided by
the facility are the suanas and showers, and the laundry.  The saunas
appear to have met a very strong, locally-felt need.  In fact, their
inclusion can be considered to have been a major ingredient in the
success of the project at Emmonak.  Despite routine maintenance, the
men's sauna has already received such heavy use as to require renova-
tion.   From the onset, the City Council recognized that income from
the saunas could be substantial and had the potential of carrying some
of the other costs of operating the utilities center.  Initially, the
fee for adults was set at $1.00.  In September 1974, this was raised
over 60 percent of all payments by villagers for services at the
center (Table 5).

Designs of any future central community facilities for villages in
the Lower Yukon-Kuskokwim areas should take into account this experience

at Emmonak.  Additional space for dressing and resting should be pro-
vided.  Sauna heaters should be sized to maintain temperatures of 230F
without problem, and the sauna furnishings, wall panels and floors need
more carefully be selected so as to withstand the continuous exposure to
high temperature and the wide fluctuations in moisture.

Drinking water has been available from the facility since February 1973.
During the 2-1/2 years of operation since then, water sales to village
households have ranged from 4,000 gallons to 17,000 gallons per month.
Total sales, which include water furnished to the community center and
the schools, have reached a maximum of 53,000 gallons per month.

The average daily water use looks about as follows:

                    Customer                Gal/Day (Avg.)

           BIA School                              660

           Community Center                        120*

           High School  Construction Camp           380

           Village Homes                           360

           In-Plant Use                           2880

               Cold Water        2080
               Hot Water          800

            *Because of water meter malfunction, this number
             was inferred from other data

The pattern of seasonal fluctuations in sales of water to households at
Emmonak is the reverse of that observed at Wainwright, with peaks regu-
larly occurring in mid-winter and lows reached between July and September
(Figure 17).  In summer, largely because of the fishing, villagers tend
to be too  busy for any but the most essential household chores, and water
is available from rain.  In the absence of a full-scale delivery system
and with intra-village travel particularly difficult because of the
standing water and mud, those households located some distance from the
plant obtain some of their water from more convenient sources.

Whereas the history of water sales to homes has shown only seasonal
trends, use of the laundry and baths has steadily increased.  The shar-
pest income increase has occurred in the use of the bath by women (Table

Service charges were initially set by the City Council as follows:

           Shower, adult                       $ .50

           Shower, youth                         .25


                     TO HOUSEHOLDS
              1973                1974                   1975

Figure 17.   Water Sales  at Emmonak.

          Sauna/Shower, adult                  1.00

          Sauna/Shower, youth                   .35

          Washing Machine, small                .50

          Washer-Extractor                      .75

          Dryer, unit time                      .10

          Drinking Water, self-service          .02/gal.

          Drinking Water, delivered             .03/gal.

In September 1974, responding to increases in staff costs, the rate
schedule was revised upward.  Two service categories were established:
one for commercial users and public institutions, the other for village
residents and homes.  The rate for drinking water to residents was inten-
tionally kept low, without regard to costs, so as not to discourage its
use.  In case of the rates established for service to businesses and
public institutions the rates were meant to reflect real  costs.

Current schedule of rates charged at Emmonak:

     1.  Services to village residents and houses

         Sauna and/or shower, adult                     $1.75

         Sauna and/or shower, youth, age 12-15            .50

         Washing machine, small                           .75

         Washer-Extractor                                1.50

         Dryer, half cycle                                .10

         Drinking water, self-service                     .02/gal.

         Drinking water, delivered                        .04/gal.

     2.  Service to Commercial Users and Public Institutions

         (BIA School, High School, Community Center and businesses)

         Drinking Water, via utiliduct or delivered      $ .07/gal.

         Graywater treatment, via utiliduct                .05/gal.

         Blackwater treatment, via utiliduct               .18/gal.

Since November 1973, the Emmonak facility has been locally managed as the
"Emmonak Utilities Center" under the cost sharing contract with the City

of Emmonak.   Because the City did not have enough operating capital to
finance the  contract and since banks would not extend a loan, an advance
payment in the amount of $10,000, later increased to $17,000, was made
by EPA to the City.

Under the contract,  the City Council, in consultation with the EPA Pro-
ject Officer, sets policy.   Responsibility for management and maintenance
of the facility and  for day-to-day operation rests with a chief operator.
He supervises an assistant operator, two public attendants, a driver/
mechanic, and one or more skilled or general laborers as the situation
may require.  The assistant operator acts as deputy.  Because the facili-
ty is open on weekends and nights, work schedules are staggered.

The chief operator's current pay is $7.90 per hour, with a raise contem-
plated in the near future.   The assistant gets $5.97 per hour, the
attendants are paid  $3.25,  and skilled laborers get $9.68.  The rela-
tively high wage of  the chief operator is commensurate with his responsi-
bilities.  He has been with the project from its inception, is highly
competent and has provided the kind of continuity which is essential.
The City Council is  considering making the chief operator position a
salaried one.

Since March 1973, when the facility began to provide services regularly,
operation and maintenance costs have averaged $6,300 per month.  About
55 percent of this covers the wages of employees, 30 percent is for
fuel and electricity, and the remainder goes for supplies, spare parts,
and other overhead items.  As the result of the need for higher wages,
increases in the price of fuel and electricity, and because the black-
water and graywater  systems will now be treating wastes from the two
schools and the community center on a continuous basis, monthly expendi-
tures and income are expected to increase.

Financial records are being kept by the City Clerk.  This job pays
relatively little and has been held by four different individuals in
2 years,  some with very little experience or training.  It appears that
the clerks have been performing their duties in good faith and that
contract funds are responsibly handled.  However, because each of the
clerks has had his/her own  system and because the clerks succeeded each
other without a formal closing and transfer of accounts, it is possible
that the  requirements of a  formal audit at some future date can not fully
be met.

                             SECTION VII

                            PROJECT COSTS

Since 1970, several changes in accounting points and accounting proce-
dures have occurred in EPA.  Therefore, the project costs shown are
based on project office records which may reflect small  errors.

As previously noted, IHS and HUD contributed to the facility at Wain-
wright.  Non-EPA contributions are indicated by asterisks on the indivi
dual item and are included unidentified in the totals.  Entries are
rounded to the nearest $100.


Emmonak Facility (1972-1976)

     Design                                          $ 63,700

     Construction                                     514,300

     Safety Modifications and Facility
          Completion to date                          181,600

     Additional work required, est.                    25,000
                               Estimated Total       $779,600

Uainwright I Facility (1972)

     Design                                          $ 52,900

     Construction Contract                            508,600

     Misc. Direct Support                              15,000

     Water Storage Tank (IHS)                         335,000*
                               Total                 $911,500

Wainwright II Facility (1975-1976)

     Design and Inspection                           $ 49,500

     EPA Procurements                                 210,500

     Construction Contracts:
          Phase I
          Phase I (HUD contribution)
          Phase II
          Extension of award period
          Contract Modifications, est.
     Shipping of Equipment and Materials
     Force Account Work
     Generator Shelter
     Vehicle Shelter (IHS)
     Vehicles and Trailers  (IHS)
                               Estimated Total
Design for Smaller Villages
Village Personnel Training
Operation and Maintenance - Emmonak
(April 1, 1973 to October 1. 1975T
     EPA Support

Operation and Maintenance - Wainwright
(April 11. 1973 to October 1.  19757
     IHS Support
     EPA Support

$  529,500
    50,000* (1974)
    54,000* (1972, FOB


  $ 78,400*


  $ 34,700*


EPA Administration (1971 through FY 1975)

     Personnel                                       $497,600

     Travel                                           144,700

     Miscellaneous                                     51,400
                               Total                 $693,700

All these costs are substantial, and the question arises whether such
Federally sponsored central community facilities are costing more than
they should.  The recent establishment of commercially sponsored com-
munities at Prudhoe Bay makes possible some comparisons.  Atlantic Rich-
field Company (ARCO) and Exxon have made available capital and operating
cost information for the sewage treatment and water treatment plants in
their joint operations center on the North Slope (1).  Before mid-1975,
the design size of these plants was comparable with that of the AVDP
facilities.  They served a population of 300 to 400 people in a boarding
house type arrangement.

As of December 1, 1974, gross investment in the ARCO-Exxon Operations
Center water and sewage treatment plants was $1,173,021 and $1,026,754,
respectively, making a total of $2,199,775.  Building plumbing fixture
costs are not included.  Yearly gross operating costs are reported as

                                1972         1973         1974

          Water Treatment     $131,000     $162,400     $147,200

          Sewage Treatment      74,900      121,000      120,500

Neither property taxes nor prorated Anchorage office administrative
support costs are included.  Average monthly operating costs thus come
to $12,240 for water treatment and $8,790 for treatment of sewage.  The
total average monthly cost of operating the Emmonak AVDP facility ($6,300)
compares favorably with the above.  AVDP capital costs have also generally
been lower.

                             SECTION VIII

                       OTHER STATEWIDE PROGRAMS

Among efforts to establish and improve water-related utility services
in  rural Alaska, EPA's AVDP program is the smallest in size.  Any assess-
ment of how the job should be done must take into account the experience,
program emphasis, and scope of work of two agencies who have the primary
responsibility of meeting this need.  The organizations concerned are (1)
the Office of Environmental Health; Indian Health Service; U. S. Public
Health Service; Department of Health, Education and Welfare; and (2) the State
of  Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation.


Since 1960, under authority of Section 5, P. L. 86-121, the Alaska Area
Office of Environmental Health, Indian Health Service (IMS) has assisted
43  Alaskan villages with the construction of water and sanitation facil-
ities.  About 2500 homes have been furnished with running water.  Pro-
jects currently underway will serve an additional 16 villages and 530
homes.  Thirty-three villages have been provided with a watering point
from which water can be hauled, as an interim measure, until complete
facilities can be provided.  About 50 percent of the rural Alaskan
natives have been served with running water.  Not all the water systems,
however, are fully functional.  Over 100 villages are still without
satisfactory arrangements.

The improvement and safeguarding of people's health is the primary
mission of the IHS.   Within that context, an assured supply of safe
water in the home and sanitary removal of wastes from the home are con-
sidered to be first requirements.   Control of pollution in reference to
the larger environment is a secondary objective.  It is accomplished
where relatively simple treatment methods will  do the job, but is felt
to  be an unjustifiably expensive luxury in those cases where advanced
methods of waste treatment would have to be applied to fully meet formal
environmental  protection standards.

Because most Alaskan villages lack the economic base to support complex
utility systems, a primary IHS design consideration is low operation and
maintenance cost,  even if this requires high capital investment.  IHS con-
cludes that in Alaska, the EPA requirement for secondary sewage treatment,
and especially for the best possible treatment by 1980, may very well make
the difference in  whether or not a village can afford to operate and main-
tain a facility.   Both from a public health and environmental viewpoint,
secondary treatment is considered unnecessary at most locations.  Facula-
tive sewage lagoons  are used wherever possible because of their high reli-
ability and low operating and maintenance cost.

Extended aeration  package treatment plants have been installed in a few
villages.   Their operating history, whether for lack of funds, skill or

attention, has been poor; in almost all cases, the quality of treat-
ment actually attained being less than from facultative lagoons.

Concern has been expressed over the practicality of meeting the provi-
sions of the recent Safe Drinking Water Act.  IMS expects the Safe
Drinking Water Act to complicate methods of water treatment and quality
monitoring unduly, and to have a major adverse effect on the operation
and maintenance cost of small rural water treatment and distribution
                                             Communities are
Projects are initiated by application from villages.
selected for participation on the basis of:

     1.  Urgency of health need.

     2.  Economic and engineering feasibility.
     3.  Ability of the village to participate in and to
         contribute to the project.

     4.  Ability and willingness of the village to assume the
         responsibility for operating and maintenance of the
         facilities to be provided.
Enactment of applicable local
utilization of the project to
the village people.
                                       ordinances to aid in
                                       improve the health of
Since 1967, emphasis has been placed on serving those communities re-
ceiving new housing under Department of Housing and Urban Development
and Bureau of Indian Affairs programs.

Village Councils participate in deciding on the type of project best
suited to their community and must agree to assume ownership and full
operation and maintenance responsibility for completed facilities after
an initial 1 year period of operation.  In the course of construction,
villages are expected to make contributions in labor or in kind.  The
force account method of construction is preferred because it reduces
cost and allows best utilization of local  labor.   Training for  local
operators is provided.  Field engineers are available to help with
technical problems when requested and limited funds are available on
emergency basis, in the case of major malfunction or breakdown of a
sanitation system (2).

In conjunction with the construction of sanitation facilities, the
Office of Environmental Health also conducts a comprehensive environ-
mental health program in the villages.  A team of 20 sanitarians and
sanitarian technicians, 18 thereof stationed in the field, engage in
epidemological investigations, provide instruction in vector control,
food handling and accident prevention, and consult with householders
on matters of health within the home.

Funds made available for IMS sanitation  facilities  construction in
Alaska have varied widely,  as shown  below:

               Fiscal  Year                  Amount

                  1960                   $     19,000
                  1961                       112,000
                  1962                       240,000
                  1963                     1,058,000
                  1964                     1,281,000
                  1965                       456,000
                  1966                       476,000
                  1967                       442,000
                  1968                     1,246,000
                  1969                     4,804,000
                  1970                     3,933,000
                  1971                     3,737,000
                  1972                     9,882,000
                  1973                    10,300,000
                  1974                    11,198,000
                  1975                    10,810,000
                  1976                    15,000,000

The  1974 amount includes $6 million  for  water service development at
Barrow.  The figure shown for 1976 is the requested amount.   Additionally,
about 10 percent of the funds spent  in construction are required for ad-
ministration.  The office has a current  engineering, sanitarian and  adminis
trative support staff of 53.

Senate and House Bills for  the Indian Health Care  Improvement Act (94th
Congress, 1st Session, S.522 and H.R. 2525) are expected to  be passed
soon.  They would establish as national  policy "to  provide the highest
possible health status to Indians and to provide existing Indian health
services with all resources to effect that  policy."  If fully funded,
the  Indian Health Care Improvement Act would make  available, among
other things, $378 million  over a 5-year period to  supply unmet needs
for  safe water and sanitary waste disposal  facilities, thereby substan-
tially boosting the IHS sanitation facility construction program in

The  Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act,  P.L. 98-638,
which was signed into law on January 4,  1975, will  change the adminis-
tration of the IHS sanitation facility construction program.  The Act
directs the Secretary of the Department  of Health,  Education and Welfare,
upon request of any Indian  tribe, to enter into contracts with tribal
organizations to carry out  any or all of his functions, authorities,
and  responsibilities which, in reference to such a  tribe, he may have.

In Alaska, native communities and organizations are much preoccupied
with problems in getting the Alaska  Native Claims  Act implemented and
this time and are likely, therefore, to  prefer not to assume too many
additional responsibilities immediately.  In the course of the next 5
years, however, this situation can be expected to  change.


In 1970, following the lead set by Congress, the Alaska State Legis-
lature passed the Village Safe Water (VSW) Act (AS 46.07) to provide
"safe water and hygienic sewage disposal facilities in villages in the
state."  The Act stipulates that a VSW facility be built only with
assurance from the village governing body that it will accept ownership
and responsibility for the operating and maintenance upon completion of
the facility.  Acknowledging, however, that villages often lack suffi-
cient financial resources to meet this obligation, the Act also allows
the State to make grants to the governing body of a village to enable
it to do the job.

To provide capital funds for construction, voters approved bond issues
for a total of $4 million in 1970 and 1972.  Insufficient staff and an
initial lack of money for administering the project delayed startup of
a program until October 1972.  Also, no fund had been established for
operation and maintenance subsidies.  Without assurance of sufficient
resources for this purpose, the Department of Environmental Conservation
(ADEC) was reluctant to proceed with construction.

In December 1972, 32 villages were identified as being most in need of
the sanitation services intended under the VSW Act.  The villages of
Northway and Chevak wanted to expand watering points earlier estab-
lished under the IHS P.L. 86-121 program into simple central facilities,
and therefore assistance was provided in completing these.  In 1973,
with a decision by the Alaska Department of Education (ADOE) to construct
high schools at Alakanuk, Selawik and Nulato, it appeared that in these
three communities the uncertainty over operation and maintenance could
be resolved.  ADEC agreed to build VSW facilities as adjuncts to the
schools, serving both the institution and the village, if ADOE would
pick up the tab for the operation.  Design and construction of the
schools and utility centers were administered by the Division of Build-
ings, Department of Public Works.  The Nulato plant has been operational
since early 1975 and the other two facilities are now nearing completion.

The ADEC has been disappointed in the results.  It had been assumed that,
by constructing both the school and the VSW facility under a single con-
tract at each location, costs could be reduced.  ADEC feels that this has
not at all been the case and has decided that future projects shall be
financed through grants to the village and be accomplished via construc-
tion management contracts instead.  Cost of the three projects at Alakanuk,
Selavik and Nulato has been over $3 million, and in the case of the
Nulato facility, ADEC feels the results have been poor.  Further compli-
cations resulted from shifts of control over rural school construction
from the ADOE to the Alaska State Operated School System (ASOSS).  ASOSS
was reluctant to accept the responsibility for operation and maintenance
which ADOE had previously accepted.  Recently, ASOSS agreed to fund part
of that cost by paying $6,000 per month for water and waste service at
two of the three schools.

ADEC plans to continue the VSW program by constructing central community
facilities of simpler scope at the small villages of Beaver, Koyukuk and

Pitkas Point.  Kongiganak, Eek, and perhaps Anvik are considered as addi-
tional sites.  Currently, $800,000 remain available for construction.

In FY-76, funds were approved for the preparation of a long-range plan
for the VSW program.  This plan is expected (1) to identify those villages
where VSW facilities should be installed, (2)  to determine what services
should be provided by each facility to be built and (3) to establish a
schedule for project construction.  Capital spending needs will be

In its FY-1976 budget, the ADEC also requested and received $289,000 to
assist the first eight villages with the operation and maintenance of
their VSW facilities.  These funds are looked  upon as an interim solution
until State policy concerning operation and maintenance for VSW facilities
can more clearly be established.   As a first step, the Commissioner of the
Department of Environmental Conservation submitted a comprehensive report
on the Village Safe Water program to the Governor on September 12, 1975.

This report describes the program in detail, airs a number of internal
administrative problems and raises the matter  of operation and mainte-
nance support as a major issue (3).

          Construction of any utility system,  especially in
          the relatively harsh environment of  rural Alaska,
          is money wasted unless  provisions are made for the
          system to be properly operated and maintained.
          Most if not all villages qualifying  for VSW projects
          lack the necessary resources to administer, manage,
          operate and maintain even a minimum  VSW facility
          (or any other utility system) without continuing
          outside assistance...

          To date the State does  not have a firm policy posi-
          tion on how to provide  for VSW operation and mainte-
          nance.   Some of the options to be explored...have
          already become apparent in the few years the VSW
          program has been in existence...

          Some alternatives to consider are: (1)  a grant pro-
          gram to subsidize rural  water and waste utility serv-
          ice, (2)  a system of State owned and operated facil-
          ities to provide water  and waste service in remote
          areas,  (3) a utility system owned and operated by
          native  organizations either as a service or a profit
          making  venture (perhaps  subsidized by the State), or
          (4)  a public utility managed by private organization
          perhaps controlled and  subsidized by the State.

          A program for operation  and maintenance of VSW facil-
          ities should perhaps not be considered  independent
          of the  need for a system to insure proper operation
          and maintenance of rural  sanitation  facilities in
          general.   In fact it might be well to consider the
          possibility of an operation and maintenance system
          for all  rural  utilities  (4).


The Report to the Governor goes on to analyze annual facility operating
costs.  In 1974 dollars, these were estimated to range from $25,000 to
over $100,000 per village, not including amortization.  The Report
concludes that less than half of these amounts can be expected to be
raised from individual users and public health clinics.  The rest would
have to come from schools or from the State or Federal governments di-

In formulating the long-range plan mentioned above, the VSW program
staff plan to consult closely with IMS and AVDP personnel.  June 1976
is set as the target date for plan completion.

                             SECTION IX


Two major, related issues have been identified which must be resolved
before a statewide village sanitation facility construction progam can
fully succeed.  One is in reference to operation and maintenance support.
The other is in reference to the degree of waste treatment required.


With rare exception, Alaska native villages cannot pay for the full
cost of routine operation and maintenance of water-related utilities,
especially where complex treatment is required to meet established
standards.  This finding has openly been acknowledged by the Alaska
Department of Environmental Conservation and is tacitly agreed to by
the Alaska Area Office of the Indian Health Service.  The Alaska
Department of Environmental Conservation has suggested that it might
be best to postpone further major construction until the problems in
financing operation and maintenance of village facilities have been

In authorizing rural sanitation facility construction and Indian pro-
grams, legislatures have dealt with the matter of operation and mainte-
nance support in a variety of ways, mainly by skirting the issue.  The
Surgeon General  was authorized in 1959, under the Indian Sanitation
Facilities Program, " make such arrangements and agreements...
regarding...responsibilities for in his judgement are
equitable and will best assure the future maintenance of facilities in
an effective and operating condition."  (Section 7.a.3., P.L. 86-121)
Since no funds for maintenance were authorized, the IHS has inter-
preted this  to mean that operation and maintenance was to remain a
local  responsibility.   The mandate of best assuring effective opera-
tion would have to be met by selecting the more viable communities
where simple systems would do the job.  Lowest possible operation and
maintenance  cost became a foremost design criterion, even if this re-
quired unusually high investments in construction.  With the easier
locations now served,  and with stringent treatment requirements imposed
in the meanwhile, the task of providing for reliable functioning of
newer facilities, without subsidizing the operation, is becoming in-
creasingly hard.  There have been numerous system failures.

A bill  sponsored by Senators Stevens and Kennedy for "Alaska Safe
Water Facilities," in 1969 (S.7, 91st Congress, 1st Session), and
presumably a precursor of the AVDP legislation, recognized the need
for financial  operation and maintenance support and proposed that such
be authorized.   In its final form, however, all reference to opera-
tion and maintenance had been deleted from the AVDP legislation.

The recent Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (P.L.
93-638) enables the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of
Health, Education and Welfare to provide Alaska native villages with
grants for "maintenance...or operation of tribal facilities...of adequate
health facilities or services."  (Section 104, a.l. and b.l.)  Monies
for such grants, however,  must come from funds appropriated for other
existing programs.

So far, the only substantive provision which addresses the operation
and maintenance need was made by the State in the Village Safe Water
Act.  In 1975, an initial  sum of $289,000 was made available to support
the operation of facilities constructed under the Village Safe Water


The cost of operating and  maintaining water-related utilities in rural
Alaska is directly related to the level of waste treatment provided.
Operation and maintenance  costs for the waste treatment phase at
Emmonak are estimated to be at least three to four times greater than
similar costs for treating the same waste in a lagoon.

The current waste treatment requirements established under P.L. 92-500
are often more stringent than necessary to avoid environmental degrada-
tion in rural Alaska.  A high degree of environmental protection can
be attained at substantially less cost if such factors as community
size, distance between communities, character of receiving waters, cli-
matic conditions, geology, good engineering design, etc., determined the
level of treatment.  Effluent standards formulated in terms of waste
units per effluent volume  discourage conservative water use.  Safe
potable water is a scarce  and expensive commodity in rural Alaska and
will not, therefore, be commonly used as a conveyance for sewage.  Thus,
the problem of treating highly concentrated wastes to the level required
to meet current effluent standards compounds the already serious problems
of maintaining water-related utilities in rural Alaska.

Current and proposed standards will require treatment facilities which
are technically sophisticated and mechanically complex, and which are
costly to build and to operate.  In rural Alaska, such installations
are unusually vulnerable,  even when substantial resources are spent in
providing safeguards against failure.  The electric power supply is
always tenuous.  Losses from freezeups are a major threat.  When re-
placement parts are required, it can take a month to get them to the
site.  For these practical reasons, the argument for simplicity in faci-
lities designed to serve rural Alaska remains very strong.

                             SECTION X


Because the villages are mostly small and at scattered, isolated loca-
tions, institutions are needed at regional  levels to provide technical,
logistical and administrative support to these communities in operating
and maintaining basic utilities.   This need was discussed at length in
the 1973 Report to Congress.   Since then, significant developments towards
the establishment of such institutions have occurred.

In the case of the North Slope Borough, a solution has been worked out
through transfer of all municipal powers relating to utilities from
member communities to the borough.   In the so-called Unorganized Borough,
in which most villages are located, the Regional Native Housing authori-
ties were recently given authority by the State to enter into agreements
with villages for the construction, operation and maintenance of village
utilities, including generation and distribution of electric power (AS
18.55.995-996 and AS 18.57-101-110).

The Regional Native Associations, under whose auspices the Housing Auth-
orities are formed, will require financial  support if they are to take
advantage of this enabling legislation.  They would appear to be eligible
for Federal assistance from the Indian Health Service and the Bureau of
Indian Affairs under provisions of the Indian Self-Determination and Edu-
cation Assistance Act.  However, because existing programs contain no funds
for such a purpose, monies would need to be specifically appropriated.

One critically important ingredient of any undertaking like the Alaska
Village Demonstration Project are the local people charged with manage-
ment and operation.  At Emmonak and Wainwright there is no lack of
people of sufficient general  competence for all aspects of the job.
Specific training, guidance and support are essential.  This should
commence at the design stage and, depending on the community, be fur-
nished for 1 or more years after facility completion.  Also, with the
fierce competition for skilled people in much of rural Alaska, wages
commensurate with the job and the responsibilities must be paid to insure
continuity of operation.

The above observations are made only on the basis of the AVDP experience
in the two Eskimo villages of Emmonak and Wainwright.  They can not
simply be extrapolated to apply to all of rural Alaska.  The IHS, with
its far broader experience throughout the state, reports instances where
communities appear to have shown little inclination of supporting a
project after it was constructed and where competent operators have not
been found.

The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation feels that the AVDP
experience with operators at Emmonak and Wainwright could indeed apply
throughout rural  Alaska, given a sincere and sympathetic effort to develop,
motivate and sustain the local operations and if resources for this purpose
were furnished for the life of a facility rather than just an initial
period (5).


                             SECTION XI

1.   Letter from C.  P.  Falls, ARCO Environmental Conservation Manager,
    to H.  J.  Coutts, EPA Arctic Environmental  Research Laboratory,
    dated  December  9,  1974.   Also letter from C. H. Dunaway, Jr.,
    ARCO to H.  J.  Coutts, dated December 15, 1975.

2.   Letter from Dr.  William  Ryan, Chief, Sanitation Facilities Construc-
    tion Branch,  Indian Health Service, to Bertold Puchtler, EPA, Arctic
    Environmental  Research Laboratory,  dated January 8, 1976.

3.   Alaska Department  of Environmental  Conservation, The Village Safe
    Water  Program:   A  Briefing for Governor Hammond, Juneau, Alaska,
    August 1975.

4,   Ibid,  p.p.  9-14.

5.   Letter from J.  W.  Sargent, Alaska Department of Environmental Con-
    servation to  Bertold Puchtler, EPA, Arctic Environmental Research
    Laboratory, dated  January 23, 1976.

                                   TECHNICAL REPORT DATA
                            (Please read Instructions on the reverse before completing)
                                                           3. RECIPIENT'S ACCESSI Or* NO.
    Water-Related Utilities for  Small  Communities in
    Rural  Alaska
             5. REPORT DATE
                  September 1976

     Bertold Puchtler, Barry Reid,  Conrad Christiansen
                                                           8. PERFORMING ORGANIZATION REPORT NO.

     Arctic Environmental  Research  Station
     Corvallis Environmental Research  Laboratory
     College, Alaska 99701
             10. PROGRAM ELEMENT NO.

             11. CONTRACT/GRANT NO.
    Corvallis Environmental Research  Laboratory
    200 S.W. 35th Street
    Corvallis, Oregon 97330

              interim  July 1973-June  1976
    The "Alaska Village  Demonstration Projects"  (AVDP)  were authorized by  Section 113,
 P.O. 92-500 (86 STAT 816),  for the purpose of demonstrating methods to improve
 sanitary conditions in  native  villages of Alaska.   Central  community facilities  have
 been constructed  in the native villages of Emmonak  and Wainwright to provide  a safe
 water supply; toilets,  bathing and laundry facilities; and sewage and waste disposal.

    The idea of coming to  a  community center to  secure  water, to do the laundry,  and to
 bathe has proven  acceptable to the people of Wainwright and Emmonak.  However, Alaskan
 native villages generally can  not pay, through  service charges, the full  cost of
 routine operation and maintenance of water-related  utilities, especially  where complex
 treatment is required to  meet  waste treatment standards.

 The physical-chemical wastewater treatment provided  required considerable modification
 and detailed operator attention to provide consistent  secondary treatment.  There is
 no  single best method of  constructing water-related  utility facilities in rural
                               KEY WORDS AND DOCUMENT ANALYSIS
                                              b.IDENTIFIERS/OPEN ENDED TERMS  C.  COS AT I Field/Group
   Sewage treatment
   Water supply
                            13-B,  C

    Release  unlimited
19. SECURITY CLASS (This Report)
                                              20. SECURITY CLASS (This page]

                           22. PRICE
EPA Form 2220-1 (9-73)
                          Cr U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE: 1976698-153 /I40 REGION 10