Trenton, NJ - Residents and businesses in the 48 North Jersey cities and towns served by the Passaic Valley Sewerage Commission wastewater treatment system are strongly encouraged to minimize water use to reduce stress on the storm-damaged sewage treatment system and help limit partially treated effluent flowing into Newark and New York Harbor.
The PVSC, which serves 1.4 million customers in Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Passaic and Union counties, is working closely with the state Department of Environmental Protection, federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to repair damage caused by severe flooding and power outages that has limited the level of treatment of the 240 million gallons a day of wastewater that normally flows through this facility.
"We are asking residents and businesses served by the PVSC to heed the Governor's Executive Order for mandatory water use restrictions, and to be even more diligent in conserving water to help us reduce the flow of effluents into the harbor and limit environmental impacts until we get this plant fully operational,'' said DEP Commissioner Bob Martin.
The PVSC system, which is the nation's fifth treatment largest works, was damaged by an energy failure caused by Hurricane Sandy. All wastewater flow into the system was fully restored over the weekend. The wastewater currently is receiving basic primary treatment and disinfection through chlorination and a sediment settling process. The wastewater is going to an outfall site in New York Harbor.
A major facility rehabilitation effort is now underway, with a goal of restoring full secondary treatment of wastewater. Flooded tunnels and galleries have been pumped out and are being cleaned. Electrical components are being assessed and repaired. Damaged equipment is being repaired and replaced. Storm debris in and around the plant is being removed. Efforts are being made to restore the plant's sludge disposal operation.
The following towns are served by the PVSC: Bayonne, Belleville, Bloomfield, Cedar Grove, Clifton, East Newark, East Orange, East Rutherford, Elizabeth, Elmwood Park, Fair Lawn, Franklin Lakes, Garfield, Glen Ridge, Glen Rock, Hackensack, Haledon, Harrison, Hasbrouck Heights, Hawthorne, Hillside, Jersey City, Kearny, Little Falls, Lodi, Lyndhurst, Montclair, Newark, North Arlington, North Bergen, North Caldwell, North Haledon, Nutley, Orange, Passaic, Paterson, Prospect Park, Ridgewood, Rutherford, Saddle Brook, South Hackensack, South Orange, Totowa, Union City, Wallington, West Orange, Woodland Park and Wood-Ridge.
The Governor's Administrative Order includes the following water use restrictions, prohibitions and exemptions:
To read the Governor's Executive order, visit: http://nj.gov/infobank/circular/eocc106.pdf
To read the DEP's Administrative order, visit: http://www.nj.gov/dep/docs/ao20121101.pdf
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