Wednesday, October 19, 2005

There must be a better way

It is hard to understand why it is still necessary and permissible to pump vast quantities of sewage (raw and treated) into the world's oceans. Yes, I know that the amount of sewage pumped into the sea is very small compared to the total volume of sea water, that there have been studies that claim that it is a safe practice, that it is economically necessary, blah, blah, blah. Yes, I know and understand the arguments in favor of dumping sewage into our oceans.

However, I must say I find the thought of diving in sewage (no matter how diluted or treated) to be repulsive. Yes, I know that the fish do their thing in the sea. I am ok with that. I am not ok, however, with introducing our waste into the oceans, when there are better ways of treating and processing sewage.

The following appeared in an article on CDNN ( - originally from the Bradenton Herald.

BOYNTON BEACH, Florida (17 Oct 2005) -- State environmental regulators are investigating a pump that's dumping treated sewage into the Atlantic Ocean after recreational scuba divers said it was killing a coral reef.
The group, Palm Beach County Reef Rescue, says a pipe from the South Central Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant is spewing nitrogen-rich sewage that's fueling algae blooms. The algae are fouling the Gulf Stream Reef, a popular diving spot off Boynton Beach a mile and a half away from the pipe, the divers say.

"It's clear-cut," said Reef Rescue Director Ed Tichenor, a former New Jersey environmental consultant for private industry. "There are areas of (the reef) that look like a parking lot now."
I am not a scientist, marine biologist or an activist. I am just an average guy who loves to dive and help other people dive. It bothers me that we still need to dump sewage into the oceans when there are so many other options available. Why must we harm the oceans just because it is cheaper to do it that way?

As a society, we should display the moral integrity and courage to make the difficult decisions necessary to be good stewards of the natural resources that have been entrusted to us.

1 comment:

Susan said...

Well spoken.