New Law Prohibits Sewage Dumping Into Tidal Creeks By Boaters
July 30, 2009
Correction: It is currently legal to discharge
appropriately treated sewage from boats into tidal creeks with the
exception of the Lynnhaven River near Virginia Beach. However, the new
state law encourages the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality to
petition the U.S. EPA for federal designation of Virginia’s tidal creeks
as “no discharge zones.”
Under a new state law, boaters may no longer dump treated or untreated sewage or other waste into tidal creeks in Virginia. Sewage now must be collected at marinas with disposal facilities approved by the Virginia Department of Health.The law designates tidal creeks as “no discharge zones.” Marinas within these zones must post signs to alert boaters to these zones.Untreated sewage can threaten human health because it contains viruses and bacteria such as fecal coliform. Raw sewage also harms the environment as it contains large amounts of nitrogen, which encourages excessive growth of algae that starves plants and fish of oxygen.
For more information, contact the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality at 804-698-4131, TTY 711.
Contact: Merni Fitzgerald, Director, Office of Public Affairs
703-324-3189, TTY 711, Media Pager: 703-324-NEWS (6397)
To request this information in an alternate format, call 703-324-3187, TTY 711