Local Authorities & the EPA
I have written about this before, but I think it deserves another mention with a link to the document so everyone can download this for themselves and see exactly what the local authorities have been doing with all the boom money…
In this publication that the EPA has put out it lists all the waste water treatment facilities that serve over 500 people by county, etc. and the levels of treatment standard that they are meeting. It shocks you when you read into this document that most of our local authorities are the biggest abusers of insufficiently treated effluent going into surface water.
What bothers me even more is the EPA will currently not give a domestic dwelling a licence to discharge to surface water under the guise that individual homes would flaunt the law and not maintain the effluent system however they issue plenty of discharge licences to local authorities who are presently not able to treat their effluent to a minimum standard for safe discharge.
Currently we have a problem with ground water. The water table is so high in Ireland in places it is impossible to get treated effluent into it properly, creating ponding and flooding within their percolation areas. Because we only discharge to ground water, we are allowed to treat the effluent to a minimum standard, expecting mother nature to “scrub it” down to a level which is acceptable to the water table by the time it runs through a percolation area. Ridiculous when we have the technology to treat domestic effluent to a standard that would make it cleaner than the river itself.
Why aren’t we treating our single one off or small group schemes of domestic effluent to a standard suitable for discharge to surface water? Because the EPA doesn’t trust you. But wait, they trust the local authorities, who, in this report, are guilty of massive pollution due to untreated or semi treated effluent going in to the lakes, rivers and streams.
Will the problem ever get solved? In a report for the EPA given in September of 2012, the lecturer says that other than phosphorous, today’s treatment systems can treat the effluent to a degree safe enough for discharge to surface water. Even the phosphorous can be controlled with the right system.
The EPA is hypocritical in its approach to single homes or small group schemes when they let massive amounts of polluting effluent go into our surface water on a daily basis by the same people who will be telling you to install a massive high end percolation area worth €15,000 or more to ensure the treated effluent gets into the ground water.
A hard pill to swallow indeed!
August BioPro Ireland