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Alternate Design Septic System Program
Background
Invitation for New Technologies

Background

The Pinelands Commission’s alternate design septic system pilot program continues to identify high-performance wastewater treatment systems that are protective of nitrogen-sensitive environments both within and beyond the NJ Pinelands Area.

Originally recommended in 2000 by the Commission’s Ad Hoc Septic System Committee, the pilot program evaluates advanced treatment technologies used by residential development in meeting the Commission’s strict nitrogen standards on lots that are smaller than 3.2 acres.  

In developing its recommendations, the Ad Hoc Committee consulted wastewater engineering professionals, state and regional on-site technology demonstration projects, treatment system manufacturers, Pinelands Area county health departments and other state and local agencies.

After consulting with numerous regional, state, and local experts, the Ad Hoc Septic System Committee unanimously recommended the establishment of the pilot program which includes a multitude of safeguards to govern system use. These recommendations are contained in the April 2000 Staff Report to the Ad Hoc Committee. To implement these recommendations, the Commission amended the CMP in 2002 to establish the Alternate Design Treatment Systems Pilot Program. Since 2002, the CMP has been amended a number of times to incorporate recommended changes to the pilot program.

More than 350 Pilot Program systems have been installed in the Pinelands Area through December 2020. To date, three technologies have been shown to meet Pinelands water quality standards when serving residences on one-acre parcels, the minimum parcel size for onsite wastewater systems in the Pinelands Area. These approved technologies are Amphidrome, Bioclere, and SeptiTech. A fourth technology, FAST, has been demonstrated to meet Pinelands water quality standards when used to serve residences on 1.4-acre parcels.  The Commission continues to evaluate other technologies through their participation in the pilot program.

Commission staff periodically produce reports on the pilot program to summarize system installations and effluent monitoring data and periodically provides PowerPoint presentations that summarize the findings presented in the pilot program reports. In addition, Commission staff periodically produces an program Implementation Report, the last of which was issued in November 2019. The latest Implementation Reports were accompanied by an April 2018 PowerPoint presentation and a January 2020 PowerPoint presentation.

For more information about the Pilot Program, please contact Ed Wengrowski, Environmental Technologies Coordinator, at Ed.Wengrowski@pinelands.nj.gov.

January 2013 NJ DEP - Permit to Construct and Operate Treatment Works

Program Fact Sheet

Notes related to the continued use or decommissioning of Cromaglass septic systems in the Pinelands

System Vendor Information (List)

April 2000 Staff Report to the Ad Hoc Septic System Committee

Implementation Reports

No. 1 November 2006

No. 2 November 2009

No. 3 November 2012

No. 4 April 2018

No.5 November 2019

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Invitation for New Technologies

Building on past successes, the Pinelands Commission is again accepting applications from new wastewater treatment technology vendors seeking to participate in an expansion of the Pilot Program. A call for new technologies was instituted on May 3, 2021.

To be considered for participation in the Pilot Program, an alternate design treatment system must have attained verification and/or certification status through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Environmental Technology Verification Program (ETV) or National Sanitation Foundation/American National Standards Institute (NSF/ANSI) Standard 245 testing program. The manufacturer or agent of such a technology must submit an application to the Commission that includes the following information:

(1)        All laboratory test data and reports associated with the technology’s participation in the USEPA ETV Program or NSF/ANSI Standards 245 testing program;

(2)        A description of the distribution and technical support system that the technology vendor will utilize to supply and support the treatment system in the Pinelands Area;

(3)        An estimate of the cost of the technology including, but not limited to, equipment, shipping, warranty, operation and maintenance services, and effluent monitoring;

(4)        The expected total nitrogen concentration to be achieved by the technology when serving residential development in the Pinelands Area; and

(5)        An escrow fee in the amount of $2,500 to cover the cost of the Commission’s review of the application for entry into the Pilot Program. 

Items (1) through (4) above must be submitted through email to the Commission at info@pinelands.nj.gov in pdf format. The escrow check required at item (5) above must be made payable to the New Jersey Pinelands Commission and mailed to the New Jersey Pinelands Commission, PO Box 359, New Lisbon, NJ 08064.

The deadline for submission of applications is August 6, 2021. A maximum of five new technologies can be accepted in this round of the pilot program.

Further details are provided in the May 3, 2021 New Jersey Register notice.

Questions about the pilot program and application process should be directed to the Commission’s Environmental Technologies Coordinator, Ed Wengrowski, at Ed.Wengrowski@pinelands.nj.gov.

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