July 2010, Vol. 22, No.7


Unintended Shutdown

In “Stakeholders Mull ‘Consequences’ of Chesapeake Bay TMDL Strategy” [May], Edward Graham is quoted as saying, “You could close all the wastewater treatment plants down, and you’d still have a big, big challenge from the nonpoint source side.”
I know what he means to say is that if we could entirely eliminate all the discharges from treatment plants, the nonpoint sources would still be a problem. But, by shutting down the treatment plants we would exacerbate the problem, because the wastes themselves would continue and there would be no treatment systems to reduce the load.
A slight difference in the words can make a big difference in the interpretation if analyzed carefully.

Donald B. Aulenbach
Clifton Park, N.Y.

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