Sewage Spills and Sewage Sludge in Florida

Sewage Spills and Sewage Sludge 

Aging sewer pipes cause breaks and release toxic sewage into our streets and waterways. In Fort Lauderdale, over 200 million gallons of sewage spilled into the city's waterways within two months. This stinky mess results in fish, crab, oyster, and plankton deaths. Leaks happen across the state weekly. Raw sewage may contain bacteria, hepatitis A, and parasites. These sewage spills can disrupt ecosystems, pollute rivers and lakes, and contaminate drinking water. 

Every summer, we ban fertilizer with nutrients that can feed harmful algae blooms but allow landowners to dump "Class B" waste as fertilizer. Sewage sludge contains a highly carried organic chemicals, toxic metals, chemical irritants, and pathogens. There is an unknown amount of harmful toxins in these biosolids, including carcinogenic chemicals such as PFAS. A 2002 study by the University of Georgia found higher reports of ill-health symptoms and diseases near biosolids-permitted fields. Spreading sewage sludge risks decades of environmental restorations to improve water quality. 

There are different solutions to these growing issues, like limiting pollution at its source, better laws to protect the environment, and establishing limits on pollution that protect health. We can also take action through our personal choices by looking for non-toxic solutions.

Recommended Reading:

Environmental Florida: Troubled Waters 

Stel Bailey

Stel Bailey, a cancer cluster survivor and environmental health advocate, is a researcher and journalist with more than two decades of multimedia experience, having been published globally.

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