Blue Frog wastewater treatment system installed in Montague, Calif.

The new system was installed on May 3 in the first of four wastewater lagoons at the city’s Water & Sewer Department treatment facility.

Blue Frog's aeration treatment. Courtesy: Blue Frog.
Blue Frog's aeration treatment. Courtesy: Blue Frog.

MONTAGUE, CA, May 10, 2016 -- The City of Montague, cCalif., has installed a revolutionary wastewater treatment system designed to eliminate built-up sludge in a cost-effective and environmentally responsible manner.

The Blue Frog System by Absolute Aeration, LLC, was installed on May 3 in the first of four wastewater lagoons at the city’s Water & Sewer Department treatment facility. The proprietary technology, which has proven its effectiveness in dozens of municipal facilities nationwide and across California -- including Clearlake, Kelseyville and the Northwest Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant -- has already begun the process of digesting organic sludge that was built-up in Montague’s lagoons.

The traditional method of managing sludge involves dredging lagoons mechanically and disposing of the "biosolids" on farmland, or sending to a landfill. However, these practices are running into increased regulatory restrictions due to the concerns about what is contained in the biosolids -- including all manner of chemicals, toxic metals and other pathogens. Mechanical dredging is not only an expensive method; it is a reoccurring unpleasant task.

“We were faced with odor problems as well as a significant sludge buildup in our primary ponds,” said Chris Tyhurst, Supervisor for the Montague Water & Sewer Department. “We were planning on having them dredged, which is quite expensive. After discussing the problem with our consultant and city engineer, and seeing the results firsthand at Clearlake, we decided to give the Blue Frogs a try in one of the ponds. We are hopeful that we will see a substantial reduction in our sludge levels and odor problems in Pond 1. If all goes as planned, the Frogs should continue to digest the incoming load and keep the sludge level at a minimum for many years to come.”

The three Blue Frog circulators installed in Pond 1 at the facility employ a scientific advance known as “biodredging,” which uses natural biological processes to enhance organic sludge digestion. The circulators stir up the water to create radial outflowing currents within the lagoon, each moving up to seven million gallons of wastewater per day. The system selects indigenous microbes already present in the lagoon and incubates new bacteria to populate high-quality microbes.

Over the coming weeks and months, those microbes will “eat” the organic waste that has been stored up and digest incoming organic solids before they have a chance to settle. No chemicals or outside microbes are ever introduced to the lagoon.

“The installation at Montague is best described as a partial Blue Frog System designed to provide active treatment and reduce organic solids, primarily in the first lagoon,” said Grace Corbino, President of Blue Frog Technology. “We expect to see significant visual improvements and odor reduction in the pond within the first couple of weeks.”

Tyhurst said the engineer’s estimate for dredging both ponds was approximately $700,000, which would have required grant/loan funding because the funds were not available in the City’s 2016 budget.

“Even though we ordered a partial Blue Frog System, we expect that the technology will give us results in Pond 1 similar to what we saw in Clearlake,” Tyhurst said. “We are planning to install more Frogs in the remaining ponds as funding allows. The folks at Absolute Aeration have been a pleasure to work with. They’ve done their research and are very enthusiastic about their system.”

For more details about Blue Frog Technology, visit or call 888.237.7912.

Absolute Aeration is an environmental technology firm that developed The Patented Blue Frog System Technology. The Blue Frog™ System is an innovative, affordable, sustainable solution designed to meet wastewater treatment lagoon discharge standards at a significantly lower investment cost. The revolutionary technology provides a natural solution that enhances anaerobic sludge digestion, improving the function of existing lagoon systems by simply adopting new approaches and strategies. These strategies extend the life of the lagoon by restoring it back to its original design capacity. By shifting the focus from aerobic to anaerobic lagoon treatment strategies, lagoon owners are effectively released from the restraint of high horsepower aeration and sludge generation. Blue Frog System Technology represents a paradigm shift in wastewater treatment strategies.

More in Wastewater