Laboratory Services

Laboratory Services

The state-of-the-art laboratory at the Noman M. Cole Jr. treatment plant conducts approximately 100,000 analyses per year in support of county environmental programs. The lab conducts all discharge permit and compliance analysis for the wastewater and stormwater management programs, and process optimization testing for the plant.

In addition, ecosystem monitoring is conducted in and around the receiving waters (Pohick Creek and Gunston Cove) for assessing the impact of the plant’s treated wastewater effluent. The monitoring program has been in place for over 30 years and measures biological composition, abundance, species diversity and receiving water quality. Monitoring has identified a variety of water quality and ecological improvements (including record spawning runs of river herring and sizable increases in submerged aquatic vegetation) in Gunston Cove. The enhanced wastewater treatment provided by the county has largely enabled these improvements. The health of the ecosystem continues to be monitored and assessed to identify impacts and trends and allowing management decisions to be adjusted accordingly. Maintaining a healthy water environment allows for the enjoyment of many recreational activities in Gunston Cove including boating, fishing, water skiing and wind surfing.

For more information, call Wastewater Treatment at 703-550-9740, TTY 711.

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