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Re: E-M:/ Impact of sewer on freshwater, inland lakes?



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Enviro-Mich message from fred cowles <fecowles@yahoo.com>
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That is a very fair question to ask.  Your $15K should
go to good use.  The question is much more difficult
to answer than to ask.  

A lot of data exists on lakes and effects of sewers,
but it isn't all very conclusive.  Every situation is
unique.  If your and other septic systems were
draining into the lake (highly probable, even if they
were properly designed and operating properly), then
the sewer will eliminate that source of nutrients. 
Therefore, unless new sources appear, water quality
improvement should be measurable within a few years. 
If the septic systems were failing, then improvement
should be observable sooner.  Your lake is pretty
small and if it is shallow, that improvement should be
dramatic.  Deeper and larger lakes take longer to
observe the improvement.  If the sewer spawns new
development in the watershed, then the benefits of the
sewer may be negated by nonpoint sources of nutrients.
 

Lakes that have seen improvements following
installation of new or improved sewage treatment
include Belleville, Kent, Strawberry, and Ore in the
Huron River watershed.  

========== Fred Cowles


--- Me <awfar@glis.net> wrote:
>
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> Enviro-Mich message from Me <awfar@glis.net>
>
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> 
> Does anyone have results on freshwater lakes *after*
> a municipal sewer
> system is built and in operation?
> 
> Is there objective results from instrumentation,
> like showing
> significant phosphorus level drop, and how long does
> it take to notice
> the difference?
> 
> How about a subjective measure ("Wow, there really
> is less weeds in the
> lake than 3 years ago...", or, "boy it is cleaner")?
> 
> Does this only slow down eutrophication? Or, can I
> expect it to get
> "better"? 
> 
> Or, will there still be OTHER significant issues
> (some would say
> impossible) because of fertilizer runoff, etc. that
> will minimize the
> sewer's impact?
> 
> What can I expect and how long?
> 
> Thank you,
> Fred Farleigh
> Long Lake, Orleans, Ionia County MI.
> New part-owner ($15k, my part) in an *expensive*
> sewer system, going
> online soon to a septage lagoon near you...
> 
> Long Lake is a 365 Acre lake, appears to be very
> little runoff from
> agriculture in the source(s), 3/4 shallow depth, 3/4
> residential build
> up.
> 
> 
>
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