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Clearflow Products Save $2million in Pilot Environmental Protection Project, Picturesque Lake Simcoe

Updated: Aug 9, 2022

Clearflow Group, manufacturers specializing in environmental protection, has partnered with Greenland Engineering on a government project to protect the waters of the beautiful Lake Simcoe. A $500,000 federal grant was provided by the Canadian government for the pilot scheme, created to reduce the impact of construction activity on marine life within the lake and its surrounding environment.

The multi-million dollar Sleeping Lion development site was chosen for the test scheme due to its location as part of the Lake Simcoe watershed. The project was monitored over an 18-month period, analyzing the removal of TSS (Total Suspended Solids), pollutants and harmful nutrients that could otherwise negatively impact aquatic life in the area.

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Utilizing Clearflow’s innovative products, the project is expected to make a significant impact on future environmentally protective endeavors for watersheds. Results from the pilot scheme will be used to create a template of recommendations for other environmental projects in the area. This creation of a standardized process will increase efficiencies and allow for easy implementation of environmentally protective technologies by other local governments.

Tackling the Impact of Necessary Construction Activity on Marine Life

The 92-hectare Sleeping Lion housing development began back in 2015 - a mix of single-detached houses, townhomes and commercial properties. The benefits of this development for the local area were sizeable; an estimated 4,500 people could reside in the community, and the development was expected to create 350 to 500 jobs. Undoubtedly an incredible asset for the area, however as with any construction project, not without its environmental impact.

New construction activity naturally disturbs the ground on which it takes place, exposing destabilized soil which then leads to increased erosion and levels of TSS (Total Suspended Solids). TSS can include a wide variety of materials - such as silt, industrial waste, and sewage - and high concentrations of this can cause many problems for water health and aquatic life.

The focus of this pilot was therefore to remove the increased rates of TSS using a new method - Advanced Sedimentation Technologies (ASTs). Traditionally, site seeding could be used to stabilize the soil - a planting process whereby the ground is seeded to hold soil particles in place. Another option would be utilizing the settling technique - using stormwater management ponds to remove the excess TSS from the water.

Unfortunately, most of these historical methods only remove particles above a certain size - 20 microns in diameter - and so other contaminants are missed, running downstream and continuing to cause a negative environmental impact.

One of these ultra-fine contaminants is phosphorus, and for Lake Simcoe an estimated 5 tonnes runs into it every single year just from stormwater management facilities alone. Phosphorus and other ultra-fine chemicals such as chloride are therefore major issues for the watershed and left unimpacted by current water clarification methods.

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Utilizing the settling method with the use of stormwater management ponds has previously resulted in the reduction of TSS levels by 80%. Clearflow’s patented Advanced Sedimentation Technologies and selection of water polishing products were to be u