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Bill one step closer to rid area waters of sewage

The EPA has moved one step closer to passing a ban that would help rid area waters of sewage. The bill would prohibit boaters from dumping any human waste in coastal waters within New Hanover County. Currently, there are no such bans within the state of North Carolina. If passed, the bill would require waste be disposed of in one of several waste-pumping stations within the county. Recurring swimming advisories in Wrightsville Beach raised questions about the bacteria levels in the water. A UNCW study on the water quality found that human waste contributed to the high levels of bacteria. Officials at the Department of Water Quality said it's a ban they would like to see up and down the Carolina coast. Marina owners said they would support the ban, but raise questions about how it would be enforced.

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Smoke and mirrors again......

There has been active law against the discharge of sewage from a vessel since 1972 and is actively enforced. If anyone has knowledge of anyone discharging such into public waters with 3 nm, the USCG will jump right on it and always have. Very serious fines will be imposed! All marinas must post signs stating that it is a "Closed Head Marina", meaning that your discharge valve is required to be in the off postion and locked per USCG requirements. USCG has the right to board any vessel either underway or at the dock for inspection. This feature is one of the first they will look for upon boarding of your vessel. The funny thing is though, that if you pumped out every poopie tank of every boat in the area, it would be the equivelant of 1% of the smallest reported "accidental sewage discharge" as happened at Hewletts Creek. THAT kind of discharge is what causes the problems. No telling how many of those have been unreported.

Clean oceans

I had no idea boaters dumped their toilets into the water. What selfish, disgusting people! I don't know if I'll ever take my grandkids to the beach again.


New Hanover County and the City of Wilmington have been doing it for years, in excess of millions of gallons of raw waste.

hahaha think about all of

hahaha think about all of the people that use the bathroom in the water when they are at the beach.... it adds up to be a lot more than the number of boats!

Thank you guest0456, this

Thank you guest0456, this article is very deceiving. This new "Bill" will do nothing to prevent illegal discharge. I do not believe illegal boat discharge is the major factor in the recurring swimming advisors. How many millions of gallons of untreated sewage have been released from the municipal sewer lines into the tidal creeks?

boat discharge

As usual, the point that it has been illegal to discharge raw sewage within three nautical miles of the U.S. coast since 1972, has been ommitted. This ommission makes boaters look far more culpable in water pollution issues than they probably are, and makes No Discharge Zones (NDZ) sound like a great solution. The "No Discharge Zone" designation goes a step further than existing law, and bans discharge of TREATED sewage from a small number of vessels which have onboard treatment systems. These system must be USCG certified to work as well as most waste water treatment plants for household waste. Bottom line is it has been illegal to discharge RAW sewage from boats for over 30 years. If some are disobeying this law, they should be punished but it's unfair to say that a NDZ will radically change things by banning discharge of TREATED sewage.

3 miles

its more like 200nm last time i read the laws of the water. you can not dump plastic up to 3nm off of the beach. Nothing can be dumped inside the waterway legally. If they had more people enforcing the laws on the water and handing out stiff fines people would stop.

Not only am I shocked that

Not only am I shocked that there is not already a ban in place, but I can't believe anyone would do such a thing in the first place! How revolting!


and to think we have the cleanest beaches on the east coast. What are we leavivg our kids?