In this week's water and wastewater news, wastewater utilities speak out on the FDA ruling over antibacterial soaps, New Jersey turns a plant site into a nature preserve, and a new law focuses on Duke Energy and water contaminants.


The Food and Drug Administration has issued a final rule in the debate on antibacterial consumer products, which include household hand soaps and body washes. Manufacturers of products that contain at least one of 19 active ingredients, including triclosan and triclocarban, will no longer be allowed to market those products. The FDA has ruled there isn’t enough science to show that antibacterials are any more effective than plain soap and water in preventing the spread of disease.

The California Association of Sanitation Agencies provided a comment to the FDA during the open-comment period.

“CASA strongly supports the national campaign led by the National Association of Clean Water Agencies, Toilets Are Not Trash Cans!, focused on product stewardship efforts to keep harmful products, including triclosan, out of the sewer system,” reads the statement. “Since wastewater treatment utilities were not designed to remove triclosan and other antiseptics from wastewater, regulation of these chemicals by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the FDA at their source is the most practical means of controlling their discharge into wastewater and preventing adverse impacts on wastewater utilities, human health, or the environment.”

Related: Weekly News Briefs: Flushable Wipes Campaign Earns Award Nomination

Source: FDA press release

Nature Preserve Planned for Former Treatment Plant Site

In Camden County, New Jersey, a former wastewater treatment plant site will soon be home to hiking trails and wetland preserves. Officials there have voted to transform the now-vacant site into the Cramer Hill Nature Preserve, providing residents with access to the Delaware River and an urban forest.

“Since the Industrial Revolution, more than 100 years ago, we have not had this much riverfront property available for the residents of Camden County,” said Freeholder Jeffrey L. Nash, in a Philly.com article.

Related: News Briefs: Extreme Winter Wreaks Havoc on Water Utilities

The property includes 35 acres, and has stood empty since the plant was torn down in 1990.

Source: Philly.com

Duke Energy To Pay for Home Filtration Systems

A new state law in North Carolina will require Duke Energy to pay for new waterlines and filtration systems to homes within a 1/2-mile of facilities that store coal ash. The Department of Environmental Quality sent letters to about 1,000 households near the ash storage pits, announcing the change.

Related: Weekly News Briefs: Illegal Dumping Causes Contamination at Treatment Plant

The law was influenced by a 2014 coal ash spill along a river at a power plant in Eden.

Source: ABC News


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