Pollution + Dilution = Solution

I stand by what I wrote.

Adequate treatment of sewage is that which does not harm the environment and does not cause possible human/environmental health issues.

The appropriate way to handle marine sewage from vessels that tie up each night is to discharge the sewage to shore facilities, period.

I'd like to respond to Mr. Lamson's letter with the following paragraphs from the Massachusetts Coastal Zone Management - No Discharge Area Application template:

"Vessel sewage, like many other pollutants, can be harmful to the environment when it is not adequately treated. Sewage contains a high concentration of nitrogen, a substance that can lead to algal blooms and low dissolved oxygen concentrations that can affect the health of fish, shellfish, and eelgrass beds. Sewage also contains bacteria and viruses that can make shellfish unsuitable for human consumption and make our beaches unsafe for swimming.

Every boat with an installed marine head (toilet) must have a US Coast Guard approved Marine Sanitation Device (MSD). The US Coast Guard tests and certifies MSDs as Type I, Type II, or Type III. A Type I MSD means a device that, under the test conditions, produces an effluent having a fecal coliform bacteria count not greater than 1,000 per 100 milliliters and no visible floating solids. A Type II MSD means a device that, under the test conditions produces an effluent having a fecal coliform bacteria count not greater than 200 per 100 milliliters and suspended solids not greater than 150 milligrams per liter. Type III MSDs are holding tanks designed to prevent the overboard discharge of any sewage, treated or untreated; although, some Type III MSDs are equipped with a "y" valve that allows the operator to legally discharge stored sewage once the vessel is more than 3 miles offshore. Boats larger than 65 feet in length must use a Type II or Type III MSD, while boats under 65 feet can use a Type I, II or III MSD.

While Type I and Type II MSDs are designed to treat vessel sewage, they do not remove significant amounts of nitrogen from the waste before it is discharged. They also cannot remove all of the bacteria or viruses. "

Moses Calouro
Maritime Information Systems, Inc.
PO Box 207 Bristol, RI 02809

See Mr. Calouro's Op Ed here.
See SSA General Manager Wayne Lamson's Letter here.

CapeCodToday.com welcomes thoughtful comments and the varied opinions of our readers. We are in no way obligated to post or allow comments that our moderators deem inappropriate. We reserve the right to delete comments we perceive as profane, vulgar, threatening, offensive, racially-biased, homophobic, slanderous, hateful or just plain rude. Commenters may not attack or insult other commenters, readers or writers. Commenters who persist in posting inappropriate comments will be banned from commenting on CapeCodToday.com.