EIA celebrates Earth Day with clean water initiative

posted on 22nd April 2020 by Eddie Saunders

Edmonton International Airport (EIA) is embracing Earth Day and its support of local innovation by testing a new water filtration system to release clean water back into the local eco-system.  

The airport is working with Alberta-based company Swirltex to use its new filtration membrane technology at the airport’s storm water ponds on the west side of the property. Almost four million litres of deicing fluid is used each year to de-ice aircraft before they take off, and this technology will help EIA’s current system remove deicing fluid from accumulated airport storm runoff this Spring and Summer. 

EIA is enthusiastic about partnering with Swirltex,” says Steve Maybee, EIA VP of Operations and Infrastructure. “This collaboration can reduce the need for future storm water treatment facilities at EIA and develop a local technology that could serve the needs of airports around the world.” 

Swirltex is pioneering portable and simple and highly effective filtration technology which will allow EIA to be able to release extremely clean and filtered water back into the local Whitemud Creek system after this process and help test this technology and support local innovation. 

The key to the Swirltex system is the distinctive flow pattern within the tubular membrane. Suspended solids, oil and other contaminants are channeled away from the membrane surface, reducing fouling, allowing more clean water to pass through the membrane pores, resulting in clean, consistent quality water. In addition, this compact, modular system is mobile and can service multiple locations. The technology can also reduce EIA’s future need to build larger water treatment facilities. 

The use of portable treatment systems on lagoons is a new business model that has been enabled by Swirltex technology. The ability for communities or industries to move wastewater infrastructure to site to site as needed, allows for one system to solve the environmental issues for multiple users. The Swirltex Lagoon Unit system at the EIA lagoon is also being used at Crossfield, Alberta. This is a great opportunity to show the effectiveness of the technology and business model,” says Peter Christou, president of Swirltex