Save the Illinois River, Inc.
24369 E 757 Rd.
Tahlequah, OK 74464-1949
(918) 284-9440

[Archived] Sewage

| News | January 05, 2014

Talk with your Congressman about the EPA's proposal to allow cities to "blend" untreated sewage with treated sewage whenever it rains.  The "Stupak/Shaw Anti-Sewage Dumping" amendment to the House EPA/Interior Appropriations Bill will prohibit this unhealthy proposal.

For those who are represented by Congressman Dan Boren, call 202-225-2701.

Please act quickly because a vote will occur soon.  More details below.

The House is scheduled to vote on EPA's budget as part of the Interior Appropriations bill. The leaders of the effort to pass the Save Our Waters from Sewage Act, Representatives Clay Shaw (R-FL) and Bart Stupak (D-MI) are taking this golden opportunity to offer an amendment to the bill that that will prevent the EPA from spending any funds to finalize its sewage dumping policy. 

The EPA's sewage "blending" policy would allow sewage treatment plant operators to mix sewage, which has been filtered but not treated, with fully treated sewage and then discharge it into downstream waters. If the EPA finalizes the sewage dumping policy, our lakes, rivers, streams and coastal waters will receive more viruses, parasites, toxic chemicals and other pathogens found in sewage.

Now, with a vote on the floor of the House only a few days away, we need all Network groups to take two additional steps:

1) Please call your member of Congress and urge them to vote for the "Stupak/Shaw Anti-Sewage Dumping Amendment" on the Interior/EPA Appropriations bill. Call the capitol switchboard at 202-224-3121 and ask to be connected to your member's office. Ask for the Legislative Assistant handling environmental issues.  

Urge the staff member to encourage his/her boss to vote for the "stupak/Shaw Anti-Sewage Dumping" amendment to prevent EPA's sewage dumping policy from being finalized for the following reasons:

. EPA's proposed policy will allow the routine discharge of inadequately treated sewage into our lakes, rivers, streams and coastal waters.  We need less sewage in our waters, not more.

. EPA's policy will allow more viruses, parasites, toxic chemicals and other pollutants into our waters, by weakening longstanding Clean Water Act protections [or "safeguards"].

. Sewage in our waters threatens public health, downstream businesses and the environment by causing illness, beach closures, harm to shellfish beds, fish depletion, coral reef damage, toxic algal blooms, and higher drinking water treatment costs. 

. Current Clean Water Act rules allow sewer operators to bypass treatment only in the event of a heavy storm where full treatment is not feasible.  EPA's new policy would allow operators to bypass full treatment any time it rains, even when there are feasible alternatives.