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Profitability


  • Onsite systems can be of value in helping utilities address the huge capital expenditures they face as they work to replace failing pipes, lift stations, force mains and other pieces of their crumbling infrastructure. Increasingly, utilities are discovering the advantages of a distributed infrastructure approach where centralized collection systems are being used in concert with individual and cluster decentralized treatment. This is particularly true places where extending sewer pipe is impractical or undesirable.

  • For example, in mountainous Tennessee, the challenges of trying to blast through rock to extend the sewer pipe are simply too great to overcome.  The Consolidated Utility District of Rutherford County, TN provides service to many of its communities via a type of large onsite system known as a STEP (Septic Tank Effluent Pumping) system.

  • In the Battery Park area of New York City, the Solaire and several other nearby large high-rise buildings are treating and reusing wastewater within their buildings for toilet flushing, make-up water for the building’s boilers and as irrigation for its green roof. This approach greatly lowers the water bill for the buildings while adding only minimally to the municipal wastewater stream.

  • As more utilities move to watershed based management plans, onsite and decentralized treatment fit naturally. They help keep a larger share of water within the watershed. They reduce operating costs. They create jobs. What's not to like?