Delhi Township is one of a small group of municipalities in the country to win the 2008 Clean Water State
Revolving Funds’ Pisces Award for its biosolid digester. The processer is used at the township’s wastewater
treatment plant on Grovenburg Road.
“To be recognized for something that benefits the environment and the people of Delhi Township is great,” Delhi
Township Manager John Elsinga said. “We knew this project was going to be good since day one.”
In 2006, township officials were presented with a chance to both upgrade its current facility and partner with
Michigan State University by using a $9.85-million state revolving fund loan and a possible grant.
“Even though the state grant fell through, the township liked the project so much it continued it anyway,” said
Sandra Diorka, director of the township’s public works department. “We broke ground in 2007.”
The loan allowed the township to increase its capacity for processing biosolids and uses innovative technology to
produce biosolids suitable for direct land application.
“That electricity can be sold to local energy companies,” Diorka said.
In the end, the township saves $75,000 a year by keeping costs down and keeps the environment safer by doing
it in a cleaner way.
How does it work?
“It’s complicated, but basically the biosolids are stabilized through a process that creates methane gas,” Elsinga
said. “The captured methane fuels two microturbines that generate the electricity.”
The township saves money by lowering its demand for electricity by about 20 percent,” Diorka said. “The more
demand, the higher the cost overall to be supplied with electricity.”
The Delhi Township Wastewater Treatment Plant serves more than 23,000 people in the township, two small
portions of the city of Lansing, and a foster care facility located in Windsor Township.
Michigan Department of Environmental Quality Director Steven Chester came to Delhi Township Tuesday night
to give the township a national award for its dedication to clean water.
Chester presented the award to township trustees Tuesday night.
“We are pleased to work collaboratively with the township and facility staff to find new and better ways to keep
our environment and our families safe,” Chester said.