Denmark follows UK’s lead with phosphorus recycling facility

A project that has set out to test technologies for the extraction of phosphorus from wastewater has been opened in Denmark...

Grundfos Nutrient Web
Danish minister for the environment, Ida Auken, said phosphorus discharge into an aquatic environment is a global problem

A project that has set out to test technologies for the extraction of phosphorus from wastewater has been opened in Denmark.

The project at Åby treatment plant in Aarhus, Denmark's second largest city, could be developed to extract 60% of phosphorus from the wastewater processed.

A partnership for the plant was signed in January 2013, between utilities Aarhus Vand, Herning Vand and Horsens Vand, as well as Danish pump manufacturer Grundfos, the Danish Knowledge Centre for Agriculture and consultants Norconsult.

In early November Europe’s first large scale nutrient recovery facility was opened in Slough, UK between utility Thames Water and Canadian process provider, Ostara.

Aarhus Water has worked on removing phosphorus from wastewater since 2011. Unless removed, the element can form deposit in pipes and cause blockages.

Furthermore, naturally occurring phosphorus which can be mined for fertiliser is a limited resource in danger of being exhausted. Phosphorus recycling and new ways of mining it have therefore become areas receiving global attention.

Danish minister for the environment, Ida Auken, said: "Phosphorus discharge into the aquatic environment is not only a challenge in Denmark. It is a global problem, so there are great benefits in finding a method to solve it.”

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