Sludge Bugs: Sewage-Eating Microbes In Peril At Crippled West Point Plant

"A mighty river of brown, raw sewage and stormwater makes a plume offshore at Discovery Park, plainly seen from the air.

It’s from the West Point Treatment plant, gushing untreated wastewater into Puget Sound.

That’s the way it’s been for more than a month on days the region’s largest treatment plant can’t manage high flows, after a catastrophic flood crippled it Feb. 9. So when it rains a lot, it pours ­— right out of the plant’s emergency outfall. On three days of heavy rain last month, the plant dumped about 235 million gallons of untreated wastewater straight into the Sound, including 30 million gallons of raw sewage.

Even on ordinary days now, the plant’s usual sparkling output is dingy with solids it can’t cleanse — as much as 107 tons poured into Puget Sound on a single day March 3."
Lynda V. Mapes reports for the Seattle Times March 12, 2017.

Source: Seattle Times, 03/14/2017