Top 10 Wastewater News Stories of 2015

What made the headlines in 2015? Here's our list of top news stories from the world of water and wastewater treatment.
Top 10 Wastewater News Stories of 2015
Well, here it is, our Top 10 news stories of 2015. See what made the wastewater headlines this year and review some of the most-clicked-on stories at

The final fleeting days of 2015 are upon us, and as we bid ado to the old year and welcome the new, we'd like to take a moment to look back on what made the headlines. Take a look at the Top 10 news stories from These are the stories you clicked on, liked, shared, browsed and tweeted. From the odd to the controversial to the tragic, here's what happend in wastewater in 2015.

10. Man Arrested in Wastewater Plant Theft

Leave the front doors open, and what happens? At this wastewater treatment plant, a man walked in and stole $3,000 worth of computers, that’s what.

9. Dog Hair in Lab Contributes to $98,000 Fine

In one of the odder stories this year, a wastewater treatment plant was fined for unsanitary conditions. Among the problems? Dog hair in the lab, chewing tobacco on the walls and food in the lab refrigerator.

8. Former Wastewater Director Faces Grand Theft Charges

This year, a former wastewater director was charged with grand theft for taking duplicate pension pay, excess sick pay and $60,000 in copper wire. 

7. Minnesota City Sues Makers of Flushable Wipes

Oh, those flushable wipes. They were all over the news in 2015 as municipalities, manufacturers and homeowners argued about who’s responsible for sewer problems. In this story, several municipalities filed a class-action lawsuit against six makers of wet wipes.

6. Wastewater Super Indicted for Falsifying Reports

A former sewer works superintendent was charged with 10 misdemeanor charges. A report from the state attorney general said the superintendent falsified data “by altering chlorine level reports.”

5. How Much Marijuana is in Wastewater?

What does our wastewater say about our culture? A Washington state study showed that pot use had changed since voters passed a bill legalizing marijuana. 

4. Operators Manipulated Chlorine Levels, Says DNR

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources planned to permanently revoke the state wastewater treatment certification of two former Sioux City employees who manipulated chlorine levels for years.

3. Water Operator Charged with Falsifying Data

Yet another case of falsified data hits our list in the No. 3 spot. Here, a fomer Dolton, Illinois, operator faced charges for falsifying drinking water samples.

2. Operator Dies in Plant Accident

Safety might be a boring topic on most days, but there’s a reason it’s so important. In this tragic story, a plant worker died after falling through a walkway grate into an open tank. 

1. Wastewater Operator Dies in Oxidation Ditch

A tragic story landed in our No. 1 news story spot for 2015. In this news brief, we reported on a Minnesota wastewater operator who drowned in an oxidation ditch at the Belle Plaine Wastewater Treatment Plant. 


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