News: Reports of Poo Pond’s demise premature
Story by Sgt. 1st Class Erick Studenicka
KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – Although the description of its smell can never be over-exaggerated, reports of malodorous Poo Pond’s demise were premature.
In September, NATO Support Agency officials said Poo Pond – Kandahar Airfield's iconic black water retention pond for the majority of the past decade – would be drained throughout autumn and eventually be retired because it was no longer needed in conjunction with the opening of the state of the art Deep South Waste Water Treatment Plant in the southwest corner of the airfield.
However, because the commercial cooking grease and oil separator unit is not yet on line at the Deep South plant and can’t process the commercial cooking grease and oil waste generated on Kandahar Airfield, Poo Pond’s life has been extended. It continues to receive Kandahar Airfield’s commercial kitchen grease and cooking oil waste as well as the waste material from the airfield’s 1,800 portable toilets.
Poo Pond, located near the intersection of All-American Boulevard and Louisiana Road, will now remain in existence until at least mid-2013. That’s the soonest a mechanical grease separator for the Deep South Waste Water Treatment Plant can be approved and installed.
“The intent remains to close Poo Pond – it is just not happening as fast as we thought it would,” said a NSPA official.
NSPA officials said the Deep South plant is further stressed by the fact there are currently more than 30,000 residents on Kandahar Airfield and the plant was built with the capacity to treat waste water produced by 25,000 residents.
If the number of residents on Kandahar Airfield drops early next year and the mechanical grease separator is installed, it’s likely the residents on Kandahar Airfield in spring will witness the end of an era – the long-awaited closure of the Poo Pond around mid-2013.