City of Cuitzeo
The City of Cuitzeo is located in the eastern part of the Sate of Michoacan, Mexico. Founded in 1545, by the year 2000 Cuitzeo had grown to15,000 inhabitants. Although the City had sewers, there was no treatment facility and all of the raw sewage entered into the adjacent Lake.
Because of the importance of the Lake, the Mayor and the Ecology Minister were interested in implementing an affordable wastewater treatment solution.
In conjunction with Dr. Firdaus Jhabvala, NSI designed a totally passive treatment system that has no moving parts. Treatment consists of a primary sedimentation tank, a reed bed for treatment of solids, and surface flow constructed wetland. Treated effluent flows through fish ponds and then into the lake.
Construction costs were $NP500/person (about $50) and operational costs are 50 centavos/person per month (50 cents).