Cape Fear Public Authority North Carolina

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Wastewater Treatment
The Cape Fear Public Utility Authority (CFPUA) operates and maintains three wastewater treatment plants – the James A. Loughlin (Northside) Wastewater Treatment Plant (NSWWTP), the M’Kean Maffitt (Southside) Wastewater Treatment Plant (SSWWTP), and the Walnut Hills Wastewater Treatment Plant (WHWWTP).  Wastewater is purified using various physical, chemical, and biological processes designed to extract, convert, or remove organic pollutants, solids, and pathogenic (disease-causing) organisms from the incoming wastewater.  They will be described in greater detail elsewhere within this website.

The NSWWTP is a 10 million gallon per day (MGD) advanced treatment level facility located at 2311 N. 23rd Street in Wilmington, NC.  It was originally placed into service in 1970 as an 8 MGD secondary treatment facility, and many improvements have been incorporated in the intervening period.  Most recently, construction was completed in 2009 on the $80,000,000 plant expansion/upgrade project begun in 2005.  With the installation of the second effluent disposal main expected in 2011, the plant will be permitted for 16 MGD.  Liquid treatment processes installed at this facility include screening, grit removal, primary sedimentation, activated sludge secondary biological treatment, filtration, and ultraviolet (UV) disinfection.  Solids treatment processes include gravity belt thickening, anaerobic digestion, and belt filter press dewatering.  The liquid leaving the plant (effluent) is of extremely high quality as set forth in the facility’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit limits and is currently returned to the environment by discharge to the Cape Fear River.  Solids/residuals produced within the plant’s processes are stabilized to North Carolina Class B land application standards and are returned to the environment as a soil amendment applied to nearby agricultural lands.

The SSWWTP is a 12 MGD secondary treatment level facility located at 3436 River Road in Wilmington, NC.  It was originally placed into service in 1972 as a 6 MGD facility serving the City of Wilmington.  It was later expanded to 12 MGD to serve New Hanover County and the Town of Wrightsville Beach, and other improvements were also incorporated throughout the intervening period.  Improvements in capacity and level of treatment provided have been planned and are currently under design.  Liquid treatment processes currently installed at this facility include screening, grit removal, primary sedimentation, trickling filtration and activated sludge secondary biological treatment, secondary clarification, chlorine disinfection, and sodium bisulfate dechlorination.  Solids treatment processes include gravity belt thickening, anaerobic digestion, and belt filter press dewatering.  The liquid leaving the plant (effluent) is of high quality as set forth in the facility’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit limits and is currently returned to the environment by discharge to the Cape Fear River.  Solids/residuals produced within the plant’s processes are stabilized to North Carolina Class B land application standards and are returned to the environment as a soil amendment applied to nearby agricultural lands.  Additionally, they can be processed to North Carolina Class A Product/Distribution standards using alkaline stabilization.

The WHWWTP is a 0.1 MGD advanced treatment level facility located at 17 Little Creek Road in Wilmington, NC.  It was originally placed into service in 1970.  Liquid treatment processes currently installed at this facility include activated sludge biological treatment, secondary clarification, filtration, chlorine disinfection, and calcium thiosulfate dechlorination.  Solids treatment processing consists of aerobic digestion.  The liquid leaving the plant (effluent) is of extremely high quality as set forth in the facility’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit limits and is currently returned to the environment by discharge to the Northeast Cape Fear River.  Solids/residuals produced within the plant’s processes are stabilized to North Carolina Class B land application standards and are returned to the environment as a soil amendment applied to nearby agricultural lands.

Tour the Wastewater Treatment Plants
James A. Loughlin Northside Facility Tour Request
Requests can be submitted by phone, email, or fax:
James A. Loughlin Wastewater Treatment Plant
2311 N 23rd Street
Wilmington, NC 28401
P: (910) 332-6736
F: (910) 332-6731


M'Kean Maffitt Southside Facility Tour Request
M'Kean Maffitt Wastewater Treatment Plant
3436 River Road
Wilmington, NC 28412
P: (910) 332-6735
F: (910) 332-6732



Payment Center & Administrative Offices: 235 Government Center Drive Wilmington, NC 28403
Customer Service: (910) 332-6550 Fax: (910) 332-6352 Water/Sewer Emergencies: (910) 332-6565
Payment Center: 305 Chestnut Street Wilmington, NC
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