Keywords: E coli, environmental source, false positives, fecal coliforms, Klebsiella, paper mill waste, wastewater treatment, bacteria
Significance of indicator bacteria in a regionalised wastewater treatment plant and receiving waters
A regional wastewater treatment plant was found to be discharging high concentrations of fecal coliform bacteria in excess of acceptable surface water criteria. An investigation of the sources of those bacteria showed their origins to have been environmental, primarily from a pulp and paper mill. False positive and false negative fecal coliforms were also found and enumerated. These bacteria were found to increase in numbers through the treatment plant, unlike sewage treatment plants in which they decrease to the effluent.