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Group Description

Orange County, CA Ocean Outfall Group was created to close a shameful chapter in our history: the sewage waiver that allowed Orange County Sanitation District to avoid full secondary treatment of all sewage prior to its discharge into the Ocean.

This two year campaign, involving hundreds and thousands of selfless volunteers and agitators spending tens of thousands of hours, succeeded in bringing a new wastewater policy into being. The dawn of this policy involved OCSD's changing its slogan, "balancing unpleasant impacts", to "generational equity" in dealing with wastewater disposal costs and impacts.

In general, OOG findings include the idea that "things of the land should remain on the land", instead of being flushed out of sight into the Ocean. This entails the eventual reclamation of all wastewater through a balanced policy of source separation and treatment, traditional sewage treatment plants, and innovative methods such as constructed wetlands and bio-swales, such as that created at the Little Shell Wetland in Huntington Beach. This enables a balance between the habitat and the world of humans.

We grew to perceive 3 major problems: crumbling infrastructure, long past its effective life; urban runoff, caused by too much urban and too much to wash off; and purposeful discharge of unwanted materials in the Ocean. The easiest of the three is the latter problem, as enunciated by Joan Irvine Smith, such as the sewage waiver.

Our method of disposal of fecal solids goes back to Roman times: flushing them away with water into the Ocean. Eventually, new methods must be investigated and, if appropriate, be adopted.


Everyone who worked to end one of the 4 scandalous CA waivers is eligible to join this group.

Group Information

  • 68
  • Watersheds
  • Aug 6, 2003
  • English

Group Settings

  • This is a restricted group.
  • Attachments are permitted.
  • Members cannot hide email address.
  • Listed in Yahoo Groups directory.
  • Membership requires approval.
  • Messages require approval.
  • All members can post messages.

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