Are you wondering whether the Turtle Cove Beach east of Stanley is safe to swim?
If you are, then probably you’ve arrived to the right place.
This presentation will include an detailed explanation of the sewage treatment in Stanley, the conditions of Turtle Cove, how the nitrogen cycle plays in the role of waste treatment and comparing and contrasting the sewage treatments in other major cities.
By the end of this powerpoint, you will be able to determine for yourself whether it is actually safe to swim in Turtle Cove Beach.
As shown on the map, we can see exactly where the sewage comes out of the pipes from the sewage plant. As soon as the water leaves the pipe and enter the sea water, a current drifting north will carry all the water in that direction. Thus people swimming in Turtle cove would be swimming in sewage water coming from the pumping stations. It is safe to say that when excluding dispersing factors, the sewage water would go to that spot somehow.
Difference between Sewage Treatments in Hong Kong and Sewage Treatments internationally
The Sewage treatments vary from country to country. Hong Kong is one of the countries which are fortunate enough to have a sewage water treating system. Thought what is important is that Hong Kong does not have the most sophisticated sewage water treatment in the world. Take simply the Stanley sewage treatment works, it is an organized system to purify sewage water. But in comparison to other countries, one significant difference already is the fact that Hong Kong already lacks a primary treatment. Although they all go through the same process, one that does not do a certain step will definitely have disadvantage to it. The treatments may share the secondary and tertiary treatment, but in-between the sub-levels, some things may differ. The sewage process maps show that they have different steps and branches but in the end achieve the same thing.
Mineralization – “process in which organic compound (dead plant, animal material) is converted to inorganic compound (nitrate, carbon dioxide)”
Denitrification – process of nitrates forming to gaseous nitrogen
Nitrification – oxidation of ammonia to nitrate nitrogen
Bacteria Fixation – From N 2 to bacteria
Leaching – washed through or out of the soil
Eutophication – increase in nutrients, system which increases primary productivity
Anerobic – capable of living without oxygen
How the nitrogen cycle works Step 1: Nitrogen-fixation. Atmospheric: Happens when Nitrogen (N2) is oxidized at high temperatures (by lightning) to make nitrite (NO2). This can combine with water to form nitric acid (H2NO3), which is deposited on earth through rainfall. Biological: Done by bacteria which can convert N2 into ammonia (NH3) if an energy source is present. Some get this energy by directly absorbing sunlight (blue-green algae) or by living in the roots of plants (legumes, alder trees), who provide them with food ( Rhizobium, Azospirillium ). Step 2: Conversion to Ammonia. As amino acids and nucleic acids require N in the form of Ammonia, if nitrate (NO3) present, it must be converted to NH3. Step 3: Biological Use. Ammonia is incorporated into proteins, nucleic acids Step 4: When organism dies, ammonia is released back into the biosphere through the process of Ammonification, in which water is added to proteins to make carbon dioxide and ammonia. This process happens during digestion, and is also done by bacterial and fungal decomposers. Step 5: If ammonia released into oxygen rich soil, other bacteria can convert it into nitrite or nitrate through the process of Nitrification. This is a problem, as it gives the molecule which contains Nitrogen a negative charge, which repels it from soil particles, causing it to be easily leached into streams and groundwater. Step 6: If soils remain anaerobic, another group of poop will convert it back into inert, atmospheric N2 through the process of Denitrification. In this process, bacteria use nitrate as an Oxygen source for respiration.
How does waste treatment play in nitrogen cycle? Large amounts of nitrogen release to the environment is extremely bad for the environment because in certain areas, the nitrogen level is high which makes the some of the plant utilize the nitrogen in order to grow faster. This results in leaving fewer resources and thus making certain plants become extinct and because of this many species of animals, insects and birds are directly affected by this. Onsite sewage facility are wastewater systems that are made to treat and dispose effluent on the same place that it produces wastewater. Examples like septic tanks and holding tanks release a vast amount of nitrogen in to the atmosphere. This is done by discharging through a drain field which are removing the contaminants and impurities from the septic tank into the ground. Because of this, the nitrogen cycle has been greatly altered by humans thus creating a bad environment to the atmosphere.
All in all, it is essential that we go back and look at the question, “Is it safe to swim in turtle cove?” Beach conditions do mark the overall status of the beach, as far as it shows, it had been able to maintain itself at a good level. The fact that the water quality could be tested and marked in the good to fair range, it is actually considered pretty good. What’s important to note is the fact that this water, is also the same water that is being washed North from the sewage discharge pipe near the treatment works. As the current is in such a perfect spot to carry the sewage water up, there’s really no way Turtle cove can prevent itself from receiving it. Thus, the questions is answered. The beach has its monthly checks on water quality to make sure that the level doesn’t fall too low, since that is the case, that means that it has been okay for quite a long time as till now, many people swim there. So we can say that there is definitely sewage water flowing into turtle cove, but it does not have any major impact on the people who swim or play around there. As long as the water quality is good and safe for us to swim in, then there is no reason to say that it is not safe to swim in Turtle Cove Beach.
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Continue… "Nitrogen Cycle" Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia . Web. 23 Mar. 2010. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nitrogen_cycle>. "Stanley, Underground, Sea Outfall." Civil Engineering Computer Aided Learning (CIVCAL) . Web. 23 Mar. 2010. <http://civcal.media.hku.hk/sewage/stanley/default.htm>. "Wastewater Treatment -- Britannica Online Encyclopedia." Encyclopedia - Britannica Online Encyclopedia . Web. 23 Mar. 2010. <http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/666611/wastewater-treatment>. "YouTube - The Nitrogen Cycle." YouTube - Broadcast Yourself. Web. 23 Mar. 2010. <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZCogeBk92NA&feature=related>.