As the 50 year celebration of wastewater treatment in Athens comes to a close, we acknowledge one more unsung hero. You, the beneficiary of improved sanitation. After potable water is used, it becomes wastewater. It is created with the flush of a toilet, the washing of dishes, the rinsing of clothes, and the draining of a bathtub. We all contribute to the outflow, whether it is from our own homes or used by local businesses to produce the items and services we consume.
The citizens’ role in wastewater treatment is more than a passive one. Anything and everything you put down the toilet or drain has an effect on our water reclamation facilities (WRF). Our systems are equipped to handle the usual suspects found in wastewater: pee, poo, and paper. However, other items, such as plastics, prophylactics, paper towels, baby wipes, and pharmaceuticals, are harmful to the WRF equipment. Fats, oils, and greases (FOG) result in clogs, which lead to sewer overflows. We thank you, our unsung heroes, for remembering your toilets and sinks are not trash cans. We thank you for putting FOG in the trash can or recycling it to protect our waters.
We appreciate all of your efforts toward water conservation. Like anything else used daily, the components of the WRF suffer from wear and tear. Larger volumes of wastewater entering the plant contribute to this deterioration. Efficient water use in your household improves the functioning of our WRFs, increases the lifetime of each facility, and reduces maintenance and repair costs.
We end 2012 with a greater appreciation for you, and all of the Unsung Heroes, who helped Athens-Clarke County reach 50 years of successfully reclaiming, refreshing, and returning our waters to the source. This has been certainly been something to celebrate. Thank you.
A Few of ACC's Unsung Heroes in Action
The Council on Aging replaced all the
buildings' bathroom fixtures and toilets
with WaterSense ones. They protect
our water reclamation facilities by
using water wisely.
Tommy Hall does his part to protect
our waters by recycling his Fats, Oils,
& Grease (FOG) at the North Oconee
Water Reclamation Facility.
Lily Anne Phibian reminds us a
toilet is NOT a trash can.
Remember the 3 P's of flushing:
pee, poo, & paper.