A nitrogen-reducing septic system processes urine in such a way that nitrogen gas is formed that safely rises into the atmosphere instead of being directed to the water table.
- Nitrogen Reducing Septic systems are Marylands way of preserving the bay. Put simply, the nitrogen released from our septic leaves the tank with the sewage water, enters the drain field, and eventually finds its way into the watershed. The nitrogen is like a fertilizer to the algae in the bay.
What is a nitrogen reducing septic system?
April 2020. A nitrogen-reducing onsite wastewater treatment system is installed to replace a traditional septic system less than 100 yards from a coastal wetland. Septic systems work by slowly infiltrating waste through the soil and ultimately into groundwater.
How much does a nitrogen reducing septic system cost?
Cost: For a typical residential septic system installation (3-4 bedroom home) the NITREX™ filter will cost approximately $4,200 – $5,000 (plus shipping and local installation costs). The pretreatment system materials costs are typically $8,000 – $12,000.
What is a nitrate septic system?
Nitrate is a form of nitrogen that is found in the soil underlying septic systems. Other sources of nitrate are agricultural areas among stockpiles of fertilizers and animal manure. High levels of nitrate and chloride in the soil surrounding a septic system indicate contamination of soil from leaking septic tanks.
Are septic tank additives necessary?
Septic tanks are designed to take care of waste disposal on their own — no additives needed. With regular septic tank pumping and inspections, a septic system should last decades. A septic system is used primarily in rural areas without access to city sewer systems.
What happens to urine in a septic tank?
The urine is diverted to a small holding tank, usually located in a basement, while feces still get flushed into a septic tank. Others use small portable urinals to collect urine, Nace says. Moreover, the average person uses more than 3,000 gallons of clean water every year just to remove urine from toilets.
Does aeration reduce nitrates?
Aeration phase length control combined with intermittent aeration or alternate high-low DO, has proven to be an efficient way to reduce the nitrite-oxidizing bacteria population and hence achieve N-removal over nitrite.
How much does a denitrification system cost?
The premium cost of incorporating a gravity denitrification system into a septic system replacement is $10,000 per unit. The cost per unit to construct a denitrification barrier adjacent to a water body that receives groundwater from an area served by septic systems is $100/linear foot.
How do I reduce ammonia in my septic tank?
Nitrification is the most common way to biologically remove ammonia in wastewater lagoons. In this process, ammonia treatment occurs via bacteria already present in the water. These bacteria break down the ammonia and eventually promote the release of nitrogen gas into the atmosphere.
What is the best thing to put in your septic tank?
Biological Additives. Biological additives, like bacteria and extracellular enzymes, are the only acceptable septic tank treatment for promoting a healthy, natural bacterial ecosystem, maintaining an effective drain field, and protecting the health of the local groundwater.
How do I add good bacteria to my septic tank?
Flush a packet of brewer’s dry yeast down one toilet on the bottom floor of your house once a month. The yeast will help add “good” bacteria to your septic tank and break down waste.
Can you put too much bacteria in a septic tank?
Too much of a good thing can cause problems. A septic system relies on the correct balance of bacteria to do its job. An overpopulation of bacteria can deplete the oxygen in the septic tank and turn the environment septic. A septic, septic system is one in which the ecosystem within the tank is out of balance.
Nitrogen-Reducing Septic System, Spring Hill, FL
Spring Hill, Florida is a relatively recent community in the state of Florida. It just celebrated its 50th anniversary, which occurred in 2017. With such advanced years, one of the things that is beginning to cause worry is the fact that the original septic systems are beginning to fail and need to be replaced. That is not a terrible thing for the environment, however, because it affords the chance to upgrade to a nitrogen-reducing septic system, which will help to better safeguard the ecosystem in our neighborhood.
It is the nature of a nitrogen-reducing septic system to process urine in such a manner that nitrogen gas is generated and safely rises into the atmosphere rather than being directed to the water table.
It also results in an oxygen deficit, which has a negative impact on marine life.
Contact us for more information.
Please get in touch with us if you would like to learn more about these specialty systems or if you have any other septic system requirements for your house.
You’ll also get spring hill and Zephyrhills in Plant City and Dade City in Brooksville and Lake Wales in Thonotosassa in Wesley Chapel and Ridge Manor in Ridge Manor.
Nitrogen Reducing Septic Systems – Montauk
Cesspool and septic system nitrogen pollution has been recognized as the most significant single source of poor water quality, contributing to beach closures, shellfishing restrictions, toxic algal blooms, and catastrophic fish fatalities. Traditional onsite septic systems were never intended to remove nitrogen from the environment. Each year, the average household septic system releases around 40 pounds of nitrogen into the surrounding environment. For residents in Suffolk County who live near surface waters, nitrogen may quickly reach surface waters, where it adds to the erosion of our marshes, bays, and beaches, causing them to deteriorate.
The sewage system will never connect to thousands of properties that are now served by toxic cesspools and septic systems, and will never be connected to one.
Please email us immediately or call us at (631) 267-7515 if you would like more information about nitrogen reduction septic systems.
PROGRAM OF AWARDS AND REBATE Applicants that meet the eligibility requirements can submit applications to three distinct grant programs for a total payout of up to $50,000.00.
- Suffolk County may award up to $20,000.00 in compensation
- New York State may award up to $10,000.00 in compensation
- And the Town of East Hampton or Southampton may award up to $20,000.00.
SUFFOLK COUNTY AND THE STATE OF NEW YORK Suffolk County’s Reclaim Our Water campaign is underway. Over the course of several years, Suffolk County has aggressively prepared the groundwork for the eventual use of these new technologies. The Septic Improvement Program was created by Suffolk County in order to make the expense of I/A systems that remove nitrogen from groundwater and safeguard water quality more accessible for households. Homeowners who choose to replace their cesspool or septic system with one of the new technologies will be eligible for a grant of up to $30,000 from Suffolk County and New York State to help cover the cost of one of the new systems, as part of the Reclaim Our Water Septic Improvement Program.
With financial support from Bridgehampton National Bank in the amount of $1 million and financial commitments from several philanthropic foundations, the loan program will be administered by Community Development Corporation of Long Island Funding Corp.
will administer the loan program.
- A $10,000 base payment from Suffolk County
- A $5,000 incentive for low-to-moderate-income households
- And a $5,000 incentive for pressurized shallow drainage fields/nitrogen polishing units
- And a grant of up to $10,000 from the state of New York (does not include sales tax, pumping or decommissioning, or operation and maintenance costs)
Grant Eligibility Criteria:
Prior to being evaluated for a grant, an application must meet the following preliminary requirements in order to be considered:
- There must be a septic system or cesspool serving the home
- The residence cannot be linked to a sewer system or be located within a planned sewer district. Construction on vacant lots is not eligible
- New construction is not eligible. A real property tax lien is not now owed on the property or is not currently open. a valid certificate of occupancy (CO) or a similar document issued by the local town or village
- And Verification of income (for the Low to Moderate Income Incentive Program)
EAST HAMPTON IS A SMALL TOWN The Town of East Hampton’s website provides a detailed breakdown of available funding.
- If your home is located inside the Water Protection District or if you qualify for affordable housing, you might get up to $20,000 in compensation. If your property is located outside of the Water Protection District, you may be eligible for up to $15,000 in compensation.
THE CITY OF SOUTHAMPTON The Town of Southampton’s website provides a breakdown of the funding that is available. OWTS I/A OWTS A maximum of $20,000 in rebates is provided through the Community Preservation Fund for systems located in the WQIPP’s Medium and High Priority Areas. The following income levels are eligible for the rebate: In order to calculate your final rebate, you must add together all of your qualified expenses, any grants you have received, and your adjusted gross income (AGI).
- AGI less than $300,000 equals 100 percent of net eligible expenses up to $20,000
- AGI $300,000 – 499,999 equals 50 percent of net eligible costs up to $20,000
- AGI $500,000 – $999,999 equals 25 percent of net eligible costs
- AGI more than $999,999 equals 25 percent of net eligible costs
SYSTEMS FOR NITROGEN REDUCTION IN WASTEWATER TREATMENT HYDROACTIONWastewater Works Inc. is a distributor for Hydro-Action Industries, a manufacturer of water treatment products. System for the Treatment of Wastewater Hydro-Action is a producer of onsite wastewater treatment units with more than 25 years of expertise in the wastewater treatment sector. Our method, which was developed in 1988 and moved to Indiana in 2002, is based on an activated sludge treatment process that continuously adds oxygen to wastewater, allowing aerobic microorganisms to digest the waste.
Three tank combinations are available as a single unit: pretreatment, aerobic treatment, and pump tank design.
FUJI CLEAN is a leading provider of advanced wastewater solutions.
System for the Treatment of Wastewater Field testing in Suffolk County, New York, Maryland, Virginia, and Florida has demonstrated that Fuji Clean CEN model systems deliver the highest level of nitrogen removal performance thanks to proprietary process water continuous recirculation and exclusive Fuji Clean media specifically designed to facilitate the growth of nitrogen reducing bacteria.
Fuji Clean technology, which is highly energy efficient, simple to install, and, since there are no moving components inside the tank, very simple to maintain, is quickly becoming the market leader in an increasing number of nitrogen-restricted areas.
A Homeowner’s Guide To Navigating The Installation Of New Nitrogen-Reducing Septic Systems
Over the last several years, elected officials, environmental activists, scientists, and concerned citizens on the East End have been hard at work coordinating efforts for a common cause: preserving or restoring the ecological quality of local bays and waterways, which has been a top priority for them. The replacement of obsolete and, in some cases, failing septic systems with modern, nitrogen-reducing systems is critical in attaining this aim. In order to encourage homeowners to join in, Suffolk County, Southampton Town, and East Hampton Town have all developed incentive schemes.
Officials recently discussed the measures that homeowners should take, as well as what they may expect along the road, if they are interested in replacing an outdated septic tank or cesspool with one of many nitrogen-reducing septic systems that have been approved by Suffolk County.
At both the county and municipal levels, work is being made toward the replacement of outmoded systems with more modern ones, albeit slowly and steadily.
Of those, 170 applications had been completed and 104 grant certificates had been issued, according to Jobin.
Jobin, “things are starting to work their way through.” Anthony Hobson, a Flanders homeowner and architect, was the first county resident to have a new system installed, and the cost was entirely covered by a $11,000 grant from the county and a $15,000 rebate from Southampton Town’s rebate program, which is funded by a portion of the town’s Community Preservation Fund revenues.
Septic rebate programs will be funded in part by CPF revenues, as will water quality improvement work in both Southampton and East Hampton.
According to Kim Shaw, the town’s environmental protection director, the rebate program has received 25 applications in East Hampton Town, with fewer than half receiving clearance from the Health Department, according to the town’s website.
Shaw stated that she felt a small group of individuals were quite well along in the process of collecting funding from both the county as well as the town, and she and her colleagues were “waiting to see when they’d put the shovel in the ground.” John Bouvier, a Southampton Town Council member, stated that he believed eight to ten applications were currently being processed in the town.
“We anticipated a gradual build-up in order to get it properly,” he added.
“However, I don’t want to dissuade others from including them in their plans.” Recognize Your Comfort Zone Residents’ geographic location, as well as their income, is the most important element in deciding how much municipal rebate money is available to them, while other factors are considered as well.
- In East Hampton, rebate money is not confined to residents of certain neighborhoods, albeit more money is available to homeowners who live in neighborhoods that are closer to the water.
- Residents of qualified properties in a designated water protection district—which are closest to impacted water bodies—can get a refund for up to $16,000, covering 100 percent of the cost of the project.
- Residents as well as commercial property owners are eligible for the refunds, albeit residents who own residential property must meet the Basic STAR income eligibility standards, which is a household income of less than $500,000.
- Homes with yearly incomes between $300,001 and $500,000 can qualify for a reimbursement of up to 50% of the cost, with a maximum rebate of $15,000 per household.
Jobin recommends that homeowners begin the application process at the county level, and he says the first step is to obtain the following documentation: Proof of homeowners’ insurance, a copy of the most recent property tax bill, a copy of the certificate of occupancy, the first two pages of the property owner’s most recent tax return, and, if applicable, proof of septic system failure.
- Once a homeowner enters their address into the application on the county website, the program will notify them if they live in a priority area.
- Jobin pointed out, are likely to ask for much of the same information, so filling out both forms at the same time isn’t a terrible idea.
- A civil engineer located in Sag Harbor, New York, David Rhoades has been developing nitrogen-reducing septic systems for more than 20 years.
- Even though he did not qualify for any grants or rebate money, he is as educated about the systems as everyone else in the country.
- Suffolk County has now approved four distinct systems, each manufactured by a different company, from which to choose—but making that decision will need the assistance of a specialist.
- Rhoades advises that homeowners engage an engineer or architect to sit down with them.
- Choosing what will fit and where it will look best is a joint choice between the property owner and the designers.
The systems perform many more functions than traditional septic systems, and as a result, they are more apparent.
Depending on the needs of the homeowner and the layout of the property, significant changes may be required before the system can be installed, such as tree removal, alteration of flower beds, or other landscape changes—all of which will incur additional costs for the homeowner.
Hobson said that he had to learn this the hard way.
He is now working on these projects.
The owner of the septic system was eager to point out that his whole septic system was paid for by a mix of money from both the county and the town—and that installing a new standard septic system would have cost him upwards of $8,000 out of pocket.
Hobson believes many people are not aware of at first glance, according to him.
For the time being, the most difficult obstacle for homeowners may be coming up with the additional funds that are not covered by the county’s grant program.
Because the grant only covers $10,000 toward the cost of the system (an additional $1,000 is available for homeowners who require a pressurized shallow drainfield), homeowners are left with several thousand dollars.
Currently, in order to qualify for a refund check, the homeowner must finish the repair within six months and provide receipts for all of the actual expenses incurred.
Hobson, whose system was installed on September 7, stated that he had not yet received his refund check as of last week’s deadline.
And politicians are relieved that the years of effort they have put in are beginning to bear fruit.
Nitrogen Reduction Septic System Solutions – AJFoss
Because the Northeastern states of New Hampshire, Maine, and Massachusetts are particularly sensitive to the harmful effects of untreated nitrates in drinking water, nitrogen reduction septic systems are vitally crucial for them. Because of the poor soil conditions and high concentration of bedrock and granite in these states, untreated wastewater may be able to run directly into groundwater and surface water without being treated. The addition of total nitrogen wastewater treatment to new and existing septic systems is being encouraged or even mandated in many communities – particularly those near water bodies or with homes that rely on wells for drinking water – with property owners being encouraged or even required to do so.
Septic System Cost: An Installation and Replacement Guide for New Hampshire
According to this article, nitrogen compounds originate from and play a role in our environment, the influence of dangerous nitrate nitrogen on drinking water, and the relevance of nitrate reduction for the health and cleanliness of wells and water bodies are all discussed in detail. This publication also shows how a novel alternative nitrogen reduction septic system with a self-contained process may be used to efficiently and cost-effectively prevent contamination of ground water, well water, and local water bodies in New Hampshire and nearby states.
The Role and Impact of Nitrogen
Nitrogen is a common element that is important in the biology of plants, animals, and people. It is a nitrogen-fixing element. It is a significant component of DNA, RNA, and proteins, and it is one of the three primary nutrients necessary for good plant growth, together with phosphorus and potassium, to ensure that plants grow properly. Nitrogen (N2), a colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas (N2), makes up around 78 percent of the air we breathe and is considered to be generally non-reactive or inert.
Nitrogen (N) is the most abundant nitrogen compound in the soil/water environment (NO2 and NO3).
The majority of these natural changes are aided by the activity of microorganisms, mostly bacteria, which vary in number and intensity depending on the environment.
Sources of Nitrate loading to Groundwater in New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont
Despite the fact that the nitrogen cycle is a naturally occurring process, human activity has increased the quantity of reactive nitrogen in the cycle. Reactive nitrogen production has grown dramatically over time, from 33 billion pounds per year in 1860 to 364 billion pounds per year in 2000 as a result of human activities worldwide.
In the United States, more than four times the amount of nitrogen that would naturally occur is fixed and imported. Human activities that contribute to the acceleration of the production of reactive nitrogen include:
- Production and usage of chemical and nitrogen fertilizers in the industrial sector
- Agriculture including the human cultivation of crops that biologically fix nitrogen from the environment
- Combustion of fossil fuels, which results in the deposition of nitrogen in precipitation and runoff from roads.
Agricultural fertilizers include a large amount of nitrogen, which is integrated into plants that are fed to farm animals, resulting in a little amount of nitrogen passing through in dung and urine. In addition, people consume nitrogen-containing foods and excrete nitrogen-containing feces and urine, which means that nitrogen is a naturally occurring component of on-site waste disposal effluent. With onsite sewage systems being used by one-third of the population in the United States, over one trillion gallons of waste is disposed of below the surface of the earth each year by these units.
Ground Water and Nitrogen
Ground water serves as the primary supply of drinking water for more than half of the population of the United States, and it is the only source of drinking water for many rural towns and several big cities as well. It is possible for a range of pollutants, including nitrate, to flow through the soil and pollute ground water, which is dangerous. Nitrate is the most abundant type of nitrogen found beneath agricultural soils. As a result, it is soluble in water and readily passes through soil to reach the groundwater table.
(source) Because of the high concentration of cracks in bedrock and granite in New Hampshire, Maine, and Massachusetts, these states are particularly vulnerable to nitrate seepage into groundwater.
Nitrate is regarded to be a “conservative” pollution in ground water since it is non-degradable and does not break down.
Conservative contaminants can only be reduced to a bare minimum with dilution or sophisticated treatment in onsite sewage treatment systems.
Health Risks of Nitrate in Drinking Water
The requirements set by the United States Environmental Protection Agency for secondary treatment are 25 mg/liter Chemical Biological Oxygen Demand/BOD (raw waste water) and 30 mg/liter Total Suspended Solids/TSS (treated waste water). The statutory limit for nitrate nitrogen in drinking water is only 10 mg per liter, which is a very low concentration. Drinking water with moderate amounts of nitrate nitrogen is associated with a considerable risk to the health of human neonates. When consumed, nitrate has been shown to impair the ability of the blood to transport oxygen.
Risks of Contamination from Septic Systems That Are Outdated, Substandard, or Nonexistent Historically placed septic tanks, which were erected 40-60 years ago, are a significant cause of worry and a possible source of groundwater contamination.
People who consume water from these wells run the danger of ingesting excessive quantities of nitrate nitrogen, which can be toxic.
The Evolution of Wastewater Treatment
Since the 1970s, wastewater treatment has progressed significantly. Before then, it was deemed permissible for septic tanks to be dumped straight into a stream or river. The Clean Water Act (CWA) of 1972 provided a framework for controlling pollutant discharges into the waterways of the United States as well as for regulating water quality requirements for surface waters in the United States. A pollutant is defined as any sort of industrial, municipal, or agricultural waste that is dumped into water in a general sense.
(source) The Clean Water Act made it illegal to release any pollution from a point source into navigable waterways unless a permit had been secured in advance of the discharge.
In contrast, industrial, municipal, and other facilities that discharge directly into surface waters must obtain NPDES permits if their discharges flow into a municipal system, are serviced by a septic system, or otherwise do not have a surface discharge are exempt from obtaining permits under this program.
The Role of the Norweco TNT as an Onsite Nitrogen Reduction Septic System for Homes on Waterfront Lots or with Drinking Water Wells
Controlling Oxygen Demand in Wastewater is a challenging task. There are billions of naturally occurring microorganisms in wastewater, and these microbes contain bacteria and diseases. Microbes, like people, require food and oxygen to survive. As a result, they feed on organic human waste and require fresh air to develop and multiply. Any body of water has an oxygen demand, and the lower the demand for oxygen, the cleaner the water is generally considered to be. Domestic raw wastewater contains an average of 150-300 mg of oxygen per liter of water, depending on the source.
- This test determines how much oxygen is required to neutralize the organic material present in wastewater and is one of the most commonly utilized.
- This video demonstrates how the Norweco TNT Nitrogen Reduction Septic System works.
- The TNT system, like the Norweco Singulair® system, is well suited for properties located near or on the coast, as well as near other bodies of water.
- With the help of Norweco’s system, which cycles oxygen for an hour on and an hour off, the ammonia nitrogen (NH3) that enters the tank is converted to nitrate nitrogen by bacteria and microorganisms in the tank.
The one-hour “off” cycle depletes the oxygen level in the tank, allowing bacteria to break down more easily and neutralize the nitrate compound.
Norweco TNT Exceeds NSF Standards for Nitrogen Reduction
It is certified by the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) to meet the NSF/ANSI Standard 245 for Nitrogen Reduction of compounds such as nitrate nitrogen, ammonia nitrogen, and organic nitrogen when it exits the treatment tank of a Norweco TNT System. Instead of a 50 percent decrease from influent to effluent (or from raw waste to treated water), the Norweco TNT consistently tests at a 68 percent reduction, or 12 mg/liter (or parts per million) of nitrogen total from the influent to the effluent.
Features of Norweco Septic Tanks Manufactured by A.J. Foss
Farmington, New Hampshire-based A.J. Foss, a factory-trained and certified Norweco producer and installation, is the region’s source for Norweco products. Owner Jon Cardinal describes what distinguishes the Norweco TNT System from other alternative on-site sewage systems that have been implemented in New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Maine in the video below. His explanation is as follows: “The Norweco TNT does all of the treatment in a single tank, eliminating the necessity for (and price of) adding an additional nitrogen treatment system.” For example, rival methods are unable to handle all of the treatment with a single unit, necessitating the purchase of a second nitrogen treatment system, which increases the overall cost.” According to Jon, when it comes to nitrate-reduction regulations, “Although the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services has not yet mandated requirements regarding onsite wastewater systems and nitrogen reduction, several towns, including Durham, Rye, and Newcastle, among others, have already implemented strict requirements.” It is possible that you may be interested in our related article:
Septic System Cost: An Installation and Replacement Guide for New Hampshire
Jon Cardinal is the author of this piece. The Andrew J. Foss, Inc. precast concrete firm was founded by my father in 1963 when he was just 19 years old. My precast education began at a very young age for myself. Everything I know about producing high-quality precast concrete goods, from septic tanks to concrete headwalls, was passed down to me by him. He also taught me that in order to be successful in business, you must provide a superior product and treat your customers the way you would like to be treated yourself.
A Pound of Prevention: Stopping Nitrogen at the Source with Advanced Septic Systems
April 2020 is the target date. Installation of a nitrogen-reducing onsite wastewater treatment system in place of a standard septic system in a residential area less than 100 yards from a coastal wetland. Rather than flushing trash away, septic systems slowly infiltrate waste into the soil and eventually into groundwater. Conventional systems, when properly maintained, are successful at eliminating bacteria from wastewater effluent, but they are ineffective at removing nitrogen, which is a component of wastewater.
- It is possible that the release of germs from septic systems could represent a health concern to individuals who rely on adjacent private wells for their drinking water, and that this will contribute to the closure of shellfisheries and the closure of beaches.
- Thanks to scientific advancements, new septic systems that not only remove bacteria in wastewater but also minimize nitrogen entering our watersheds, streams, and embayments are now being developed.
- The ultimate objective is to raise funds to update septic systems so that they may integrate nitrogen-reducing technology—in other words, to remove trash out of wastewater.
- The first step in that approach was the development of a model that predicted nitrogen concentrations in septic effluent.
- The overall amount of pollution exceeds the acceptable levels for public health.
As a result of its lack of a sewer system and the fact that the town’s economy is highly dependent on a seasonal home tax base and tourism revenues, Charlestown has emerged as a national leader in municipal action on septic issues, in part due to necessity (there is no sewer system) and in part because the town’s economy is closely linked to its coastal ecology.
- Septic systems contributing to the most vulnerable ecologies in the watershed were identified through the use of geographic information systems (GIS).
- Following that, in 2018, a competitive application procedure resulted in the testing of over 220 systems, with fifteen of the worst offenders in the most vulnerable zones being selected for improvements.
- Owners were also responsible for seeking at least three estimates from contractors, and they were expected to complete the work within a year after being awarded the contract.
- The researchers also looked at the technologies that may be utilized to minimize nitrogen emissions, and they discovered that upgrading septic systems would be predicted to reduce nitrogen emissions by at least half.
- of nitrogen each year.
- As a result of the changes, tons, literally tons, of Nitrogen will not reach Charlestown’s sensitive coastal systems, which will be a significant benefit.
- A cost-effective monitoring system has been devised by the researchers to guarantee that the new systems are performing as planned, a procedure that was previously time-consuming and expensive.
- Significant progress has been made in reducing the amount of nitrogen that is released into the environment by residences that have benefited from the program.
- The program’s own teaching and outreach initiatives, which included interacting with a significant portion of Charlestown’s population and producing a professional-grade video documentary series, have also helped to improve public image of their approach.
- The lessons acquired may be applied to other communities, and a second stage of the project is being planned to replicate the effort in a different location using even better and less expensive technological solutions.
Matthew Dowling ([email protected]) can be contacted for further information about the project.
- Stopping Nitrogen at the Source with Advanced Septic Systems (pdf) (April 2020)
- A Pound of Prevention: Stopping Nitrogen at the Source with Advanced Septic Systems (pdf) (April 2020)
Maryland’s Nitrogen-Reducing Septic Upgrade Program a Success
BALTIMORE, MARYLAND 14th of August, 2009. The Maryland Department of the Environment announced today that nearly 1,300 septic systems in the state have been upgraded to reduce nitrogen pollution through the Bay Restoration Fund since the first upgrade was completed in June 2007. Of those upgrades, 384 have been completed in the last two months, according to the Maryland Department of the Environment. The Bay Restoration Fund in Maryland provides funding for wastewater treatment plant renovations, cover crops, and septic system modifications in order to drastically reduce nitrogen pollution in the Chesapeake Bay and Maryland waterways.
- “It is a testament to Maryland people who care about protecting our drinking water, the Chesapeake Bay, and our local rivers and streams that septic improvements have grown so popular, so rapidly,” said Shari T.
- As a consequence of the approximately 1,300 septic systems that have been improved to date, nitrogen loads will be lowered by 7,800 pounds of nitrogen per year.
- Each year, the average septic system releases around 30 pounds of nitrogen into the groundwater.
- A modernized, increased nutrient removal septic system reduces the nitrogen load on a system by more than half.
- This does not apply to the thirteen counties that have their own improvement initiatives in place.
Additionally, in order to make the most efficient use of all Bay Restoration Funds, the Department of Environmental Protection is developing new grant criteria to ensure that available funding for septic system upgrades is directed toward homeowners with the greatest needs and the highest priority systems, particularly failing systems in the Critical Area and other parts of the state, as well as homeowners in the Critical Area and other parts of the state.
- On October 1, 2009, the revised criteria are likely to be implemented.
- It costs around $10,000-$13,000 to upgrade an ordinary septic system, plus the expense of five years’ worth of upkeep.
- Each residence with an onsite septic system pays a $30 yearly charge to the Bay Restoration Fund, which is used to restore the bay ecosystem.
- Approximately 60% of these monies are allocated for septic system repairs, with the remaining 40% allocated for cover crops.
- As a result of the approximately 4,000 new and replacement systems installed in Maryland in 2008, an increase of 12,000 pounds of nitrogen discharge per year into the Chesapeake Bay was observed.
Using current nutrient removal technology, this yearly expansion is the equivalent of adding one large sewage treatment plant per year (i.e., an extra sewage treatment facility with a capacity of 500,000 gallons per day).
An Introduction to Passive Nitrogen Removal
A passive test setup with loamy sand covering a layer of sand/silt/sawdust is shown in Figure 1. (Photo credit Barnstable County Health)
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Receive articles, news, and videos about Systems/ATUs sent directly to your email! Now is the time to sign up. Systems/ATUs+ Receive Notifications Conventional soil treatment zones are intended to provide an aerobic environment for the removal of organic matter (BOD) and pathogens from the environment. In addition, this aerobic atmosphere is extremely favorable for nitrification, which is the biological oxidation of NH 4+ to NO 3. As part of the nitrogen cycle, the nitrate created by nitrification is utilised by plants as a nitrogen source (synthesis) or reduced to N 2gas by the process of denitrification.
Denitrification necessitates the presence of two essential elements: food (typically carbon) and anoxic conditions.
However, if O 2 is available, the bacteria will preferentially pick it over NO 3-, indicating that it is there.
Denitrification cannot take place without the presence of a carbon source, which serves as the electron donor in the equation above.
In residential onsite wastewater systems, denitrification systems were previously designed to provide an aerobic treatment step and included denitrification processes by recirculation of treated effluent back to the anoxic septic tank or processing tank that contained the food and carbon-rich waste stream.
- In two studies (Magdorf et al., 1974; Eastburn and Ritter, 1984), it was discovered that mound systems can lower nitrogen concentrations by as much as 32 to 70%.
- Passive nitrogen reduction systems are systems that decrease nitrogen in effluent by employing reactive medium for denitrification and a single liquid pump, if necessary, to reduce nitrogen in the water.
- In the late 1990s, farmers began experimenting with wood chip filters as a means of reducing nitrate levels in agricultural field runoff.
- The commercial and cluster scales have been the primary settings in which this technology has been used.
- The use of a reducing filter medium, such as wood chips for carbon source or sulfur/limestone for an alternate electron donor, in an aerobic treatment stage has become increasingly popular in recent years.
- A separate subsurface upflow filter, which is filled with carbon-rich medium and provides surface area for microorganisms in an anoxic environment, has traditionally been used to accomplish this.
- Examples Florida The state of Florida has invested a significant amount of time and resources towards researching passive systems.
- An illustration of one of the systems under consideration is shown.
- Florida has recently proposed guidelines that call for a phased-in installation of in-ground nitrogen-reducing biofilters as a prescriptive design and aerobic treatment units certified under NSF 245 over a five-year period starting in 2018.
The state of New York established the Center for Clean Water Technology, which identified nitrogen-removing biofilters (NRBs) as a system potentially capable of meeting the goal of providing wastewater treatment systems for individual onsite use that are both affordable and highly efficient at removing nitrogen and other contaminants.
In the case of NRBs, they are a type of passive wastewater treatment, which means they have few moving parts (e.g., a single, low-pressure dosing pump) and function mostly by gravity.
The system, which is comprised of a sand-based “nitrification layer” underlain by a “denitrification layer” of sand mixed with finely ground wood, is installed in the same manner as a standard septic tank/pump chamber combination and is dosed intermittently by a low-pressure distribution system, as described above.
Massachusetts The Massachusetts Alternative Septic System Test Center has also investigated the passive system, which has been dubbed “Layer Cake” owing to the stacking of materials used in the system’s construction.
It was decided to use finer textured media mixed with sawdust instead of a liner in some of the configurations, which included designs that included saturated and unsaturated sand/lignocellulose mixtures as well as designs that included finer textured media mixed with sawdust to test the performance of a moisture-holding denitrification layer instead of a liner.
- Some of these studies found that nitrogen removal efficiency declined marginally in the colder winter months when conducted in Massachusetts’ cooler environment.
- SummaryA large number of investigations have been done to demonstrate the resilience of passive nitrogen removal, and work on design optimization is still ongoing.
- Passive nitrogen removal systems are expected to become permissible choices in local codes in the near future, providing designers, installers, and regulators with yet another tool in their toolbox in the process of meeting regulatory requirements.
- She has a master’s degree in civil engineering and a doctorate in environmental engineering.
- Her responsibilities include serving as the education chair for the Minnesota Onsite Wastewater Association and the National Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association, as well as serving on the National Science Foundation’s International Committee on Wastewater Treatment Systems.
Send an email to [email protected] if you have any concerns concerning septic system care and operation. Heger will respond as soon as possible.
Nitrogen-reducing septic systems to be required in all new construction projects
In accordance with a new law enacted overwhelmingly by the Suffolk County Legislature last week, the use of nitrogen-reducing septic systems in all new building projects will become mandatory. In Lake Ronkonkoma on Thursday, Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone was accompanied by members of the legislature and environmental groups as he signed the measure into law. Mr. Bellone, commenting on the importance and fragility of water quality on Long Island, stated that the Act represents a “significant step forward” in terms of safeguarding the natural resource.
Individual family house upgrades that add more than five bedrooms and expand the floor space will also necessitate the installation of these new systems.
While some may argue that the project is pricey, Suffolk County Legislator Al Krupski believes it is an investment in the future of the county (D-Cutchogue).
“That investment is justified.” Al Krupski, a county legislator, talks at a news conference held on Thursday.
Since 2017, the county has provided grant funds as well as low-interest loans to homeowners that wish to improve their heating and cooling systems.
An important step in a $4 billion plan announced last year to phase out traditional septic systems over the next five decades, the law is a critical component of that strategy.
Because of nitrogen pollution, Dr.
“We observed the start of brown tides, red tides, rust tides, and blue green algae, all of which were contributing to the demise of those fisheries,” said the author of the book.
According to Mitchell Pally, chief executive officer of the Long Island Builders Institute, it is also a “game changer” for developers, who will now be able to apply the ‘Appendix A’ technology in bigger construction projects.
Pally pointed out, “Such systems will bring a significant advantage to not only our economic growth chances but also to the protection of our environment in the county.” He went on to say that the systems may be employed in housing developments for both young people and older residents.
The Subwatersheds Wastewater Plan, which was published in 2019, proposes for the establishment of a countywide wastewater management district as well as the establishment of an unspecified revenue stream to assist homeowners in financing their septic system renovations.
However, the measure does not address a financing source for homeowners.
Approximately 1,000 residential properties are expected to be impacted annually, according to officials.
“This will save approximately 20,000 pounds of nitrogen every year,” McDonald said. “This is a watershed point in the county’s environmental history.”