Will Advanced SYSTEMs save our Waters

Septic system maintenance is never discussed in any of the save our waters meetings, which is ironic considering that maintenance is the only thing keeping septic system nitrogen contamination to the absolute minimum.  “It is not the septic system type that removes nitrogen, it’s the septic system’s maintenance!” Any type of septic system that does not receive its required maintenance will not reduce the amount of nitrogen of which it’s capable, as has been realized but not disclosed with our current enhanced septic system program. The more complicated, expensive and repetitive you make the maintenance, the more difficult it becomes for the septic system to meet its nitrogen reduction claims, more so, when forced on homeowners living pay check to pay check! 

So, with grand and exhausting efforts to protect our waters our experts will mandate the most expensive, complicated and maintenance dependent septic systems money can buy to be installed to protect Florida’s most environmentally sensitive and vulnerable waters!  

To preserve and protect our waters our experts and their lobbyists convinced our politicians to spend hundreds of millions of your tax dollars to install new and improved septic systems. The experts claim that these systems will reduce 65% nitrogen a year. This makes a lot of sense and sounds like a great investment until you read the fine print and learn that when these types of systems are out of their testing environment they don’t work quite as well and carry a lot of expensive baggage.


In the real world, the enhanced septic systems only averaged 33% nitrogen reduction a year, not any where close to the claimed 65%+ reduction as promised, along with a laundry list of problems. (FDOH:2013). Their estimated average cost is $22,500 and this does not include their required annual maintenance, repairs, sampling, permit renewal fees, service contract renewal fees and pump-out every 3 to 5 years. A modern conventional septic system averages the reduction of 50% pounds of nitrogen a year and their estimated average cost is $8,000, not including their maintenance of an inspection and pump out once every 3 to 5 years. This is the best solution our experts could come up with?

What is known but never discussed in public is that the maintenance issues and expense of the enhanced septic systems will likely “ADD” an estimated 4 pounds of nitrogen a year to our waters, at a cost to the taxpayers of $3,625 per lb. To clarify, our state experts are mandating and having your public and private funds used to pay for the installation of enhanced septic systems, knowing that their own studies show that these types of septic systems will likely increase the nitrogen in your waters! 

What has been purposely left out of the public conversations about the enhanced nitrogen reduction calculations, is their reliability to maintain 65%+ nitrogen reduction on private properties! And, the odds of the enhanced nitrogen reduction systems getting their required and expensive maintenance when forced on homeowners living pay check to pay check!

Florida is aware that the enhanced septic systems will have a difficult time meeting their nitrogen reduction claims. That is why they added the following disclaimer to their Septic Upgrade Incentive Program (a public funded program): “the Department does not endorse or guarantee the functionality of any nitrogen-reducing feature purchased or installed under this program”. This is an eye-opening statement considering the sole purpose of installing these expensive nitrogen-reducing features is to reduce nitrogen! 

The enhanced type septic system program for the BMAP areas is not new, it’s been around for a long time and it failed miserably! Everything you are being told today about the nitrogen reduction capabilities of the newly named “Enhanced/Upgrade Septic Systems” was promised by the State with the “Advanced Septic System Program” implemented 19 years ago. So, here we are today with the State doubling down with your hundreds of millions in public and private funds mandating the use of the same failing, inefficient and ineffective nitrogen reducing septic system program, ignoring the systems poor performance and again claiming high nitrogen reduction, somehow expecting a different result!

Florida will force owners living pay check to pay check to install septic systems they can't afford!

Florida will force owners living pay check to pay check to install septic systems they can't afford!

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