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Old 04-22-2017, 09:05 PM   #1
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Sewage discharges vs. pumping overboard

The following is a quote from a recent article on the Politico website concerning the rehab of St. Louis's sewer system.

"About 50 times a year, after major rainstorms, St. Louis’ sewers overflow, and 13 billion gallons of sewage-contaminated storm water escapes into the Mississippi River and its tributaries. It’s an everyday environmental nightmare and a risk to human health. And it’s a common, if largely undiscussed, urban American affliction."

My goodness,13 billion gallons EVERY year! Now, I don't pump overboard in regulated waters and am not advocating doing so. We boat on the Chesapeake. Can anyone say Baltimore? NDZs? Please.

By the way, Budweiser is brewed with this water. Maybe that explains why it is such a lousy beer. Or maybe it's the rice in the brew.
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Old 04-22-2017, 11:02 PM   #2
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It ain't just an east coast thing. Seattle does it as well as several smaller cities in Eastern WA that I have heard about.


Puget Sound just became a NDZ. I wonder if they'll go after Seattle the next time they dump a bazillion gallons or so into the sound.
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Old 04-23-2017, 01:15 AM   #3
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Seattle is still pumping since the February "malfunction". Of course it's not talked about
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Old 04-23-2017, 06:49 AM   #4
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The Med is another interesting example. A relatively enclosed body of water, it has become the target of draconian regulation by EU authorities. Ships are inspected upon entry and turned away if the sewage system is capable of pumping overboard. Aircraft photograph offenders, who are then fined to the tune of a sizable fraction of the value of their vessel.

All of this makes some sort of twisted sense to the regulatory minded, until you consider that most of the cities on the North African coast run open sewers. Sadly, further discussion on the details of the underlying MARPOL and its RCD hellspawn crosses over into the forbidden sphere of politics, so I'll be quiet now.
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Old 04-23-2017, 08:06 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catalinajack View Post
The following is a quote from a recent article on the Politico website concerning the rehab of St. Louis's sewer system.

"About 50 times a year, after major rainstorms, St. Louis’ sewers overflow, and 13 billion gallons of sewage-contaminated storm water escapes into the Mississippi River and its tributaries. It’s an everyday environmental nightmare and a risk to human health. And it’s a common, if largely undiscussed, urban American affliction."

My goodness,13 billion gallons EVERY year! Now, I don't pump overboard in regulated waters and am not advocating doing so. We boat on the Chesapeake. Can anyone say Baltimore? NDZs? Please.

By the way, Budweiser is brewed with this water. Maybe that explains why it is such a lousy beer. Or maybe it's the rice in the brew.
And, that is replicated, all over the US, every time there is a big rainstorm. Blaming boaters for E. coli levels is like blaming fish peeing for rising ocean levels.
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Old 04-23-2017, 11:35 AM   #6
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Some of these articles can be deceptive. Trying to put it into perspective is difficult. "Sewage-contaminated storm water". What exactly does that mean ? Is it 100 gallons of raw sewage and 100,000,000 gallons of rain water or half and half ? It does not give you the right information although the sewage treatment plants are required to provide an estimate of the untreated raw sewage possibly released.
Then you have to consider the degree of influence that has on the Miss. R. at that location which typically flows around 2,550,000 gallons per second. I have not done the math but I would guess 13 billion is about an hour or so of flow mixing.
I do agree that this type situation does happen all over the country and world.
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Old 04-23-2017, 11:56 AM   #7
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So with Puget Sound a NDZ, will any yacht clubs or other environmental group take Seattle to court to enforce the new regulation. Yes regulation, not law.
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Old 04-23-2017, 12:08 PM   #8
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I missed any final announcement on the NDZ in Puget Sound. Anyone have a link?
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Old 04-23-2017, 11:46 PM   #9
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Rulemaking

What is the Status of the Puget Sound NDZ | No Discharge Zone | Clean Green Boating | Washington State Department of Ecology
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Old 04-24-2017, 06:16 AM   #10
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The discharge rules are for politicos to point at , to show how much they "care".

Nothing to do with reality , or polution .
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Old 04-24-2017, 07:13 PM   #11
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Spot on, Fred.
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Old 04-25-2017, 10:06 AM   #12
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Sadly the sewerage treatment facilities around the country are in a poor state, like others have stated not much additional funding goes that way as its not a big news story/political advantage.
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Old 04-25-2017, 10:28 AM   #13
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Thanks Jay.
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Old 04-25-2017, 10:42 AM   #14
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As the state of Washington's EPA has stated "there are sufficient Pump-out-stations in Puget Sound", The problem is that a lot of them are not operational.
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Old 04-25-2017, 12:45 PM   #15
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Maybe municipalities are an order of magnitude larger a problem but I'm still trying to figure out how the last twenty marinas I've been in don't have a mobile pump out service and yet 90% of liveaboards haven't moved their boat for a year of more.
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Old 04-25-2017, 01:22 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ulysses View Post
Some of these articles can be deceptive. Trying to put it into perspective is difficult. "Sewage-contaminated storm water". What exactly does that mean ? Is it 100 gallons of raw sewage and 100,000,000 gallons of rain water or half and half ? It does not give you the right information although the sewage treatment plants are required to provide an estimate of the untreated raw sewage possibly released.
Then you have to consider the degree of influence that has on the Miss. R. at that location which typically flows around 2,550,000 gallons per second. I have not done the math but I would guess 13 billion is about an hour or so of flow mixing.
I do agree that this type situation does happen all over the country and world.
Yes, it is not 13 billion gallons of raw sewage. It's just the entire raw sewage discharge for the period of time that the system is overflowing and dumping everything into the river. That's a lot of raw sewage. Yes, the M. River flows a lot of water and I guess you are suggesting that the sewage gets lost in the volume and matters little. That's the point, isn't it? All that sewage year after year yet our do-gooder, feel-good-about-legislation legislators concern themselves about a few boaters. Yes, few, because add up all the boats and I'll bet if all dumped overboard it wouldn't amount to near the pollution that these cities dump on one good rainy day. And never mind the idocy of prohibiting dumping from an Electro-san.
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Old 04-25-2017, 03:08 PM   #17
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Have a niece with phd in bio-remediation - her favorite saying: "the solution to pollution is dilution"
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Old 04-25-2017, 05:08 PM   #18
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Here is part of the situation. Each City and/or municipal sewerage treatment facility is permitted to operate under their individual state regulations and EPA Laws. Most of their problems such as we are discussing are from old infrastructure that is subject to direct inflow and infiltration. Whiting their permitting process most of those city's have a set amount of time to address and correct such I and I problems with the state having somewhat control over the reporting and operations of those facilities. They do not have the same control (yet) on vessels and private craft.
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Old 04-26-2017, 03:16 PM   #19
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Consider the alternative: popular anchorages, harbors or marinas would become open sewers of boaters were permitted to dump overboard whenever and wherever. Then again, I may be over-sensitive, because even seeing shampoo and soap bubbles from grey water discharge seems inappropriate to me.
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Old 04-26-2017, 05:15 PM   #20
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Your response makes perfect if your from Kalif. We use Joy and Dawn on the boat to clean dishes and I see no harm in doing so. Many will regulate boating out of existence.
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