2016 Sewer Spill Report

For the last four years we have compiled and analyzed data from DHEC's sanitary sewer overflow (SSO) database to produce a report on the previous year's sewer spills. In 2016 there were 184 reported sewer spills resulting in more than 2.4 million gallons of sewage spilled in the Congaree Riverkeeper jurisdictional area.

2016 Sewer Spill Summary

Saluda River Wastewater Discharges

Saluda River Swimming Advisory Update


Update 7/7/16

After 17 days DHEC has lifted the swimming advisory for the Saluda River near Saluda Shoals Park.

From DHEC's press release:
"We have been performing daily sampling along the section of river that was impacted by improperly treated wastewater, along with the effluent being discharged from the facility, and found that bacteria levels have returned to consistently satisfactory levels," said David Baize, chief of DHEC's Bureau of Water.

2015 Sewer Spill Report

For the last several years we have compiled data from DHEC's sanitary sewer overflow (SSO) database to produce a report on the last year's sewer spills. In 2015 there were 205 reported sewer spills resulting in more than 5.6 million gallons of sewage spilled in the Congaree Riverkeeper jurisdictional area. For comparison, there were 185 reported spills totaling 1.9 million gallons in 2014.

2014 Sewer Spill Report

Sewer Spills, also called Sanitary Sewer Overflows (SSOs) are a major water quality concern in the Midlands.  Sewer Spills can result in serious risks to both public health and the overall health of our rivers.  Below is an analysis of all of the SSOs that were reported to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) in 2014.

Congaree Riverkeeper Supports Lexington Penny for Progress

Earlier this year the Board of Directors of Congaree Riverkeeper voted to endorse the Lexington County Penny for Progress Program, a proposed 1% sales tax increase to fund numerous infrastructure projects across the county. The Penny will provide millions of dollars in funding for projects that will improve river access and recreation, improve water quality, and address stormwater issues.  Below are some of the key Penny projects that will affect our rivers.

Lower Richland Sewer Project

Over the last month Richland County has held several public meetings to discuss their plans to expand sewer service to the lower portion of the county.  This plan, which will be funded primarily through a grant and loan from the USDA’s Rural Development Program, is an important step in addressing failing wastewater infrastructure and improving water quality in Lower Richland.

Dirty Half Dozen List Update

In April of this year Congaree Riverkeeper published our first Dirty Half Dozen List identifying what we believe to be the six worst permitted polluters in our area.  Since publishing the list there has been significant progress on bringing several of these polluters back into compliance.  Below is an update on the top four polluters from our list.

The City of Columbia

City of Columbia to Consider Proposed Consent Decree

On Tuesday (8/13/13) Columbia City Council will take the first vote to authorize the execution of a proposed consent decree with the EPA, DHEC and US Department of Justice.  This consent decree addresses alleged violations of the Clean Water Act and the South Carolina Pollution Control Act associated with the City’s wastewater collection and treatment system, including numerous Sanitary Sewer Overflows (SSOs) and NPDES Permit violations.  The original notice of violation was issued by the EPA in 2009 and the agencies have been negotiating with the City since 2010.