I’m flying to Columbus, Ohio Tuesday (May 12) to testify at the Ohio Environment and Natural Resources Committee on a bill (S.B. 100) sponsored by Senator Tim Grendell that seeks to stop Ohio realtors, lobbyists, engineers, and health department regulators from forcing the state’s homeowners into new high-tech, expensive, and most often, unnecessary septic system standards.
I got a call from Senator Grendell’s office two days ago; they had read my March 2008 article in The Mother Earth News on septic systems scams throughout the U.S. (Click here for article.) They had printed 100 copies of the article to distribute to various people. Would I be interested in testifying. Yes!
Briefly: we published The Septic Systems Owner’s Manual some years ago since there was no clear book on septic systems for homeowners. I was fascinated by this method of “on-site wastewater disposal” that used gravity for power (no motors or electricity), and naturally-occurring soil organisms for purification. Talk about something green!
But: “Where there’s muck, there’s brass.”
-Old English saying
There’s big money to be made. Right now, throughout the U.S., homeowners are facing self-serving engineers, regulators, lobbyists, realtors, et al, who have a modus operandi something like this: pathogens are (supposedly) discovered in a creek, river, bay, or ground water and assumed to be from failing septic systems. No effort is made (via DNA testing — now available) to ascertain just which mammals are responsible. Cows, deer, raccoons, birds, humans? Homeowners, entire towns are being faced with draconian regulations and, guess what? Huge costs — in my neck of the woods, $40,000 or so. And ironically, environmental destruction with “mounds” — elevated drainfields.
If you’re a homeowner and this hasn’t happened to you yet, be aware. It’s coming. Be forewarned. See chapter 10 from our book, “Excessive Engineering and Regulatory Overkill” by clicking here (There are 5 full chapters from the book on our website that you can read, free of charge.)
So I’m off to Ohio to present a layman’s, non-academic, homeowner’s perspective on the validity of the gravity-fed septic system. Stay tuned.