The primary investment associated with constructing a lagoon is the cost of the land and the excavation and earth-moving costs in constructing the basin. If the soil where the lagoon is constructed is permeable, an additional cost for lining is incurred.
In the midwest region of the United States, except for major population centers, the price of land is about $1500 per acre. Excavation costs vary and depend on whether dirt must be introduced or hauled away. If the dirt removed from the lagoon floor can be used for levee construction, excavation costs are roughly $2.00 per cu yd of dirt excavated. Levees are frequently compacted sufficiently by earthmoving equipment, but compacting equipment, if required, costs from $3 to $5 per cu yd. Synthetic lining material is expensive, and its use should be avoided wherever possible. The price for most plastic liners is about $1 per sq yd.
Operating costs are almost zero. In most cases, neither pumps nor any other electrically operated device is required. Therefore, power costs are usually nonexistent. Although some analytical work is required to assure proper operation, the extent of such a program is minimal compared to other methods of biological and chemical treatment. An extensive sampling system is usually not required to obtain samples for analysis. Due to the equalization effect of a large facility, a daily grab sample usually produces the necessary operational information.
Operational personnel are not required except for sampling, analysis, and general upkeep; the system is virtually maintenance-free.
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