A wastewater treatment plant cleans the water so it can be safely returned to the environment. It removes various solids, which includes everything from rags and sticks to sand and smaller particles found in wastewater. It reduces organic material and pollutants by the controlled action of helpful bacteria and other microorganisms that consume organic matter in wastewater. The bacteria and microorganisms are then separated from the water and then disinfected. The process also restores oxygen to the water to ensure the water has enough oxygen to support life in our creeks, rivers, and lakes.