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How Septic Tank Technology is Helping the Enviornment

Septic tanks are popularly used in rural areas that don’t have sewer systems that reach all of the houses. Septic tanks are buried underneath the property below a house and take any waste that is produced inside the home. It works by separating any solids or oils from the fluid in the waste, producing wastewater that is released and absorbed by the soil. The way in which the environment comes into this is that usual sewer systems will release this waste product straight into any local rivers and oceans, which can be detrimental to the natural ecosystem. Any other ‘sludge’ that is left over once the wastewater is separated is then stored at the bottom of the tank.  Because of this, you need to get your septic tank cleaned at least every four years, which is something you should think about before installing a septic tank. This might be unappealing but is far better for the environment than all of that waste being released into the environment, but how else does septic tank technology help the environment?



When you use a septic tank, all of the waste products are naturally released into the surrounding soil, this is referred to as the absorption field and the soil within this area becomes very fertile. Anyone that gardens at all know that natural waste is fantastic for fertilising the soil, and becomes a fantastic place to grow any kind of fruits or vegetables. What does grow there will be extremely high quality. This will also encourage flowers to naturally grow, which will attract and feed natural wildlife like bees or butterflies.


Lakes and Rivers

As touched upon before, using a regular sewer system means that a lot of waste product ends up in local rivers and other bodies of water. This damages the ecosystem that exists within these bodies of water and can destroy a number of food chain links and compromise the existence of any organism that lives within that environment. Not only is that an issue, but sewage being redistributed into the water system can lead to people consuming a lot of bacteria that can’t be filtered out in water systems. This can lead to illness, not only for humans but for a lot of countryside animals that depend on rivers and streams as a water source.



Septic tanks also make the use of chemical treatments redundant. Septic tanks rely on the naturally produced bacterias that occur in the tank to slowly break down any harmful substances that can be found within the waste products. This is a slow process and means anything that does get released into the environment has nothing harmful within it. This natural process is also very energy efficient and means no electricity and product is being wasted treating the waste, which is extremely beneficial to the environment. It also means that people don’t need to engage with the product and only need to look into the septic tank when any parts need replacing or for clean up.



Recent laws have been changed within the septic tank section that has made them even better for the environment. Owners of septic tanks have been asked to completely replace their drainage systems so that they no longer release into local streams or canals. Septic tanks should not leak into streams anyway, but depending on location and maintenance, there has been the case of this happening.  These new laws mean that the environment is being protected with legal implication, meaning that people are far more inclined to make these changes. People are also legally required to make sure that their tanks are in working order by checking their functionality. This prevents any overflow that can flood areas and causes leakage.


How can you help the environment

For anyone that has a septic tank, you can also take steps to improve just how environmentally friendly they already are. Septic tanks process and filter your waste and to make sure you are receiving the most environmentally friendly results, there are things that you can do. The first thing you can do is a change to using biodegradable laundry products. When you clean your clothes, you are often unknowingly releasing a vast amount of harmful chemicals into the environment. The waste breaks up within a septic tank is a natural process and so many of the harmful chemicals you use can be easily missed and released into the environment. You should only really flush biodegradable products into your system, so for example, favour biodegradable tissue over the use of wet wipes which will be difficult to break down. Also, refrain from emptying oils into your sink as they can damage the maintenance structure of your septic tank. Items such as sanitary products should also not be flushed into your septic tank as these are not biodegradable. Not only will following these rules help the environment, but they will also make it easier for you to clean your tank.


Can they be bad for the environment

Arguably septic tanks are far more environmentally friendly than the usual sewer system, if not properly maintained they can be quite detrimental to the environment. It is important that you are getting your sewer system regularly pumped as they can easily build up and flood local areas. You should also get them cleaned every few years as they only filter out water waste and often have a thick sludge left in them.

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