Phosphorus becomes present in the environment from rocks, fossilized bones from many years ago, or bird droppings. Phosphate ions, which are soluble in water, come from weathered rocks as well as erosions. When wastes and plant materials decay, phosphate is released and is returned to the environment for reuse, thus the cycle.
Phosphate is a needed nutrient or fertilizer by land plants. It is also taken up by cyano bacteria in open waters or algae or even weeds. However, excessive amounts of phosphate can produce and promote a surplus of fast-growing algae.
Water can be plagued by copious amounts of phosphorus through human influences with the introduction of commercial synthetic fertilizers. Plants may not be able to make use of all the present phosphate fertilizers applied thereby losing it from the land during run-offs. These phosphates are heavy and settle at the bottom of the water.
Phosphorus coming in from sewage treatment plants needs expensive tertiary treatment in order to remove all the phosphorus, if not, most of the phosphorus stay and accumulate the tank, and again, more phosphorus in the water. Anaerobic time alone will not cause the phosphorus to settle out and because it is locked up in the BOD.
In a tank, when BOD and COD and the proteins are in the process of being broken down, phosphorus will also be present. These will settle because they are heavy, but for most sewage treatment plants they don’t because of too much turbulence.
While for BioCleaner, it breaks down BOD and the unit provides gentle mixing, allowing phosphorus to settle. Phosphorus is also sequestered by our PAO (phosphorus absorbing organisms).
After 5 to 10 years, we can recover the Phosphorus by sucking up part of the Biobed and treating further or drying it up.