Florida Chamber, Legislators Push for Septic to Sewer Conversion to Cleanup the State’s Waters

by | Nov 8, 2017

Based on current population growth, it’s estimated Florida will need 20 percent more freshwater by 2030 to meet the needs of residents and visitors.

“Florida is adding a 1,000 people a day. We’re going to add 6 million more residents in Florida in the next 12 years…and 50 million more visitors. So water matters,” said Mark Wilson, the president and CEO of the Florida Chamber of Commerce.

Florida Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Mark Wilson releases video promoting conversion from septic tanks to sewer hookups to protect Florida’s water sources. 

The Chamber, in partnership with Brian Lapointe, a research professor at Florida Atlantic University’s Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, has released a new video focusing on water quality. The video, the fifth in a series funded by a $90,000 grant from the Chamber, takes a look at the impact that septic tank runoff has on water sources in South Florida.

“The science points directly to human pollution as the number one cause of what’s imperiling our state’s water sources. A leading cause of this pollution are aging septic tanks that are leaking into the Indian River Lagoon and St. Lucie Estuary and other parts of our state,” Lapointe said at a news conference held in Tallahassee Wednesday morning to unveil the new video.

Lapointe says that human pollution is in large part due to about 600,000 leaking septic tanks that flow into South Florida waterways, making their way into the Indian River Lagoon and eventually Lake Okeechobee.

“The evidence is undeniable. We have detected a large amount of fecal cauliform, bacteria and traces of chemicals found exclusively in humans,” Lapointe said.

Two state lawmakers, Rep. Gayle Harrell, R-Stuart, and Sen. Debbie Mayfield, R-Vero Beach, have filed legislation aimed at dealing with the problem. They say septic tank pollution is a problem for many of Florida’s waterways, but it’s especially an issue throughout the 156-mile long Indian River Lagoon.

The legislators are looking to continue the work of the Legacy Florida bill passed last year that provided funding for the Everglades and spring restoration. Their Legacy Florida 2.0 legislation would set aside $50 million a year as grants to be used for water-quality monitoring and storm water runoff projects, as well as septic tank conversions.

“Water is liquid gold, especially in the state of Florida,” said Harrell. “Legacy Florida 2.0 will  provide a dedicated and reliable funding source to address the problem.”

Mayfield agrees have a dedicated funding source is key to tackling the problem head-on.

“It’s a long-term issue. It took a long time to get here and it’s going to take some time to get out of it,” Mayfield said. “But without the dedicated funding sources so that people know here’s the plan, this is what we’re going to do, the money is going to be there to do it, instead of every year having to worry about a water project.”

Wilson says dealing with leaking septic tanks that are polluting Florida’s waters is just one piece of the problem, but he says it’s a big piece of the problem.

“This is not a silver bullet. It does not solve all of Florida’s water problems. But it’s a very important piece of the pie,” Wilson said.

 

1 Comment

  1. Paul

    Eco Sciences, LLC can help with Home Toilet and with the New Septic Waste Elimination Process and SAVE Homeowners money.
    The newly patented SolarOrganite® process will eliminates septic tank waste from toilets and septic tanks. The process is fueled only by the sun using the SolarOrganite® Process. The Waste Elimination Process will provide people on septic tanks here in Florida and the USA with a safe, sustainable and sanitary method for getting rid of their toilet waste and septic sludge that is polluting our land, lakes, springs, rivers and all other water sources.
    With this new SolarOrganite® Process, only sunlight is used to totally sterilized, pasteurized and totally dry the septic waste into a healthy and safe material that meets all State and US EPA 503 Requirements.
    This new patented processing has the capability of heating human toilet and septic waste to a high enough temperature using the SolarOrganite® Process in an enclosed chamber to pasteurize and sterilize human waste and create a 99% totally dried end product. The device is a next-generation toilet septic tank waste treatment process using only solar energy that can be used to disinfect toilet, septic liquid and solid waste while generating useful and environmentally safe end products.
    Toilet or Sewage waste is either pumped or gravity feed into the SolarOrganite® processing chamber. Based on the amount of toilet or sewage waste, determine the size of the processing chamber needed.
    The heat energy generated by the sun with SolarOrganite® Chamber to fully dry pasteurization-sterilization in the chamber that can heat up the reaction chamber to well over 70 degrees Celsius to treat the waste material, disinfect pathogens in both feces and urine, and produces a safe end product. The end product then meets all State and Federal Environmental Regulations. The fully dried, pasteurized-sterilized end product will be reduces by 99.9% and the very small volume of dried material should be removed from the chamber every five to ten years. There is NO water or polluted water discharge to protect land, lakes, springs, rivers and all other water sources. [email protected] 352-358-1222

    Reply

Leave a Reply to Paul Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published.