Temporary construction site wastewater treatment in UK

Industrial wastewater treatment with ClearFox® modular container system

construction site wastewater
construction site wastewater


Construction site




United Kingdom


Balfour Beatty PLC


300 workers




Many construction sites involved in the building of infrastructure projects outside of urban areas do not have direct access to a main sewer for the on site toilet and catering facilities for workers. In these situations, large volumes of construction site wastewater are produced by the workers, and this construction site wastewater must be managed in a sustainable way that does not impact on the environment. Construction site wastewater is highly polluted with a high ammonia and BOD load.  


Construction site wastewater is extremely variable

Construction sites are generally temporary, so building a fixed wastewater treatment plant is not considered. Worker numbers on site can fluctuate significantly from week to week. Welfare facilities for site staff including toilets, showers and catering facilities all results in significant amounts of construction site wastewater being produced each day. In the past this wastewater has often been collected in a storage tank or a cesspit and then emptied intermittently by a licensed waste company. However, this can result in significant operational costs for the construction company. 

In this situation the construction of a new motorway required a mobile decentralized construction site wastewater treatment plant that could be repositioned every few months. The system needed to have the capacity to clean extremely variable flows of construction site wastewater due to fluctuating staff numbers. Strict discharge standards of 20 milligrams per liter BOD, 30 milligrams per liter suspended solids and 20 milligrams per liter ammonia we’re required for the final effluent which was being discharged into the natural environment. the standard septic tank was unable to achieve these affluent values so a biological wastewater treatment plant was needed. 


ClearFox® modular containerized wastewater treatment system represented a perfect solution for this project. A containerized module could be placed on the back of a truck and repositioned every time the work camp relocated. The use of our fixed bed biological wastewater treatment process meant that the system provided could handle highly variable flows and loads without issue. The system operated automatically with almost no input required from the customer. Wastewater was treated to the required standards and discharged into the environment in accordance with the Environment Agency license for the construction site. When construction of this motorway finished, the containerized system was transported to another construction site in the UK. 

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