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Supervisor Supports ‘Get Pumped L.I.’ Initiative to Reduce Contamination of Ground Water

 December 23, 2016
MEDIA CONTACTS: Carole Trottere, Rebecca Cheng, Sam Marksheid, and Vicki DiStefano | (516) 869-7794

Supervisor Supports ‘Get Pumped L.I.’ Initiative to Reduce Contamination of Ground Water

North Hempstead, NY – Town of North Hempstead Supervisor Judi Bosworth is urging residents who live in unsewered areas of the Town to properly maintain their cesspool systems, also called home wastewater systems, to reduce the risk of contaminating the ground and nearby surface water. The Supervisor would like to make homeowners aware of the Get Pumped! Long Island initiative, a multimedia outreach campaign that teaches homeowners how to properly maintain their cesspool or septic home wastewater system. Get Pumped! L.I. is now offering a $50 off coupon for wastewater system service. The initiative is a collaboration of the Hempstead Harbor Protection Committee and the Manhasset Bay Protection Committee, the New York Department of State, Oyster Bay Cold Spring Harbor Protection Committee and Friends of the Bay. It is funded by a grant from the New York Department of State and the Protection committees.

“Something as simple as the proper maintenance of a home wastewater system can make a big difference in what contaminants get into our drinking water and our bays and waterways,” said Supervisor Bosworth. “Get Pumped! L.I. is offering homeowners a discount on this service which can head off a catastrophic failure and save money in the long run, while keeping our waterways cleaner.”
To view a NHTV public service announcement about Get Pumped L.I.! see link: https://youtu.be/lIDXon0QgQ0
According to the Get Pumped! L.I. program, every home generates wastewater – via sink drains, dish and clothes washers, and flushed through the toilet, which must be treated to remove bacteria before it re-enters the environment. This home wastewater system discharges into the ground, travels downward until it reaches groundwater. In the center of Long Island, this water will continue to move downward until it enters the deep aquifer from which we draw our drinking water. Closer to the shore or to streams and ponds (surface water), the groundwater beneath our houses migrates horizontally until it meets and enters our bays, streams, and ponds. Any pathogens (disease-causing bacteria and viruses), medications, nutrients, or other contaminants not removed by our home wastewater systems will be carried into either our drinking water or our coastal waters.
Regular care and upgrading of your home wastewater system is crucial to protect the water quality of Long Island Sound, its bays, harbors, and creeks. In addition to the threat of pathogens entering groundwater and surface waters, excess nutrients (such as nitrogen) from home wastewater systems trigger algal blooms, which reduce oxygen in the water when they die, hindering shellfish and other marine life survival rates. Some algal blooms produce harmful toxins can cause disease and even death to pets and humans. Excess nutrients also weaken root structures, resulting in the loss of sea grasses and tidal wetlands which help protect your property from damage during storms.
Pumping, inspecting, and maintaining your system will head off catastrophic failure and save the homeowner money in the long run.

"Maintaining your home wastewater system not only protects our harbors and bays, but can save homeowners thousands of dollars. If systems are properly maintained, they can last for decades. If not maintained, replacement of an entire system is inevitable and costly," said Eric Swenson, Executive Director of the Hempstead Harbor Protection Committee.

Several of The CESSPOOL Project Partners have arranged for several cesspool/septic companies to accept a $50 off coupon for having your home wastewater system serviced for a limited time. Inclusion in the program does not imply endorsement of these companies.


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