Protecting The Long Island Sound

Protecting Long Island Sound CT

At EcoSeptic, we are dedicated to the conservation and protection of our local environment and its water sources. The Long Island Sound is an estuary that borders New York and Connecticut and is an incredibly important water source to our area. We donate 5% of our profits to Save the Sound, an organization working to stop pollution of local groundwater and preservation and restoration of natural fish and wildlife habitats in the Long Island Sound area.


What’s Happening With The Long Island Sound?

The Long Island Sound has a history of environmental damage due to heavy pollution since the Industrial Revolution in the early 1900’s. Since that time, the Sound has suffered from a phenomenon known as hypoxia. Also known as “dead zones”, hypoxia is a condition where oxygen levels in the water are not adequate enough to support the ecosystem within. This occurs when excessive nitrogen in water pollutants cause the overgrowth of plant life which eventually die off and are consumed by oxygen-reliant microorganisms.


In the Long Island Sound, this occurs more often in hot weather conditions, but has improved in recent years. Connecticut and New York State have taken action to properly manage these “dead zones” and improve aquatic life and water quality in the area. It is Save the Sound’s mission to protect this critical water resource by:

  • Using “citizen scientists” to manage high levels of harmful bacteria in the Sound waterways
  • Measuring Water Quality
  • Restoring Fisheries & Wildlife Habitats of the Sound
  • Protecting Neighborhoods & Shores through neighborhood and shore cleanup
  • Defending Drinking Water by reducing harmful storm water runoff


Protecting the Long Island Sound


Want To Lend A Hand? Here’s How…

We love this area and truly believe in maintaining and caring for its beautiful resources. There are many ways that you can get involved in supporting your local environment as well. Here are some resources for anyone looking to lend a helping hand:


Climate Change Is Causing Septic Tanks To Freeze

septic tank frozen

With current climate change and temperatures reaching extremes across the country, it comes as no surprise that residents of states with harsh winters are experiencing freezing septic systems. Frozen septic tanks can be a costly repair, and more often than not, they can affect your everyday life until maintenance is performed. Unfortunately, harsh temperatures and external circumstances can prevent maintenance from occurring immediately. Let’s talk about everything you need to know about freezing septic systems and how to prevent it from happening to you.


What causes septic tanks to freeze?

These unusual freezes are caused by a combination of extremely cold temperatures and a lack of snowfall. Snow acts as insulation against freezing temperatures for septic systems in the winter. Without that snow, septic systems are left to face harsh conditions with little protection.


why are septic tanks freezing


Why is it an issue?

As the planet experiences climate change, temperatures and weather patterns shift. The lack of snow and increasing harsh winters means that the frost line – or the maximum depth where soil freezes – is much deeper in the ground, often below septic pipes and systems.

Another common issue many face is the lack of access to maintenance trucks. For example, Minnesota experienced a harsh winter in 2018 and saw quite a few frozen septic tanks. When people began to call septic companies to help get their systems running again, the companies were unable to send their maintenance trucks due to a weight restriction placed on the roads in the winter months. This lack of access meant that those affected had to find repair solutions to their frozen tanks themselves.


What can I do to prevent my septic tank from freezing?

To protect your septic tank from freezing, you’ll need to provide the insulation missing from the lack of snow. You can protect your system by covering it with 8-12 inches of mulch, leaves, hay, or other loose, non-compactable material. This will simulate the same protection that snow would provide.

After covering your system with that insulation, be sure to avoid compacting it; that is, avoid having people or animals step on it. If the materials become compacted, they no longer insulate your system.

Another way to prevent freezing is by running warm or hot water through your system once a day, whether that’s doing laundry, running a dishwasher, or putting other sizable amount of warm water through the pipes. This will keep the pipes warm and prevent freezing. However, note that running water constantly may not be an effective solution as it can overwhelm your system.


how to prevent frozen septic tank


If you are want some more help to prevent your septic tank from freezing, call in the experts at EcoSeptic! Give us a call and schedule a free phone consultation at (203) 293-0832 or schedule online today!


CT Water Company Plans To Pump 1 Million Gallons Per Day From Wilton

Local water company seeks to divert 1 million gallons per day in Wilton, CT

What Is Happening?

Aquarion Water Company has submitted an application for a water diversion  permit to the The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP). They have a well site approved in the 1980’s, but until now, it has not been used. They are now applying to request permission to begin using it. The DEEP requires a permit for any consumptive water diversion over 50,000 gallons per 24-hour period. Aquarion Water Company has applied to divert 1,000,000 gallons per day from a well on Cannondale Rd. in Wilton, CT. The Town of Wilton is in its early phases of gathering facts in order to understand if this is a sustainable action by Aquarion, seeking council from lawyers and environmental experts alike.

By The Numbers

In 1984, a 90-day well test was performed deducing that 1.5 million gallons per day could be pumped from the well sustainably, but there are questions about whether the test is outdated and many are concerned about long-term consequences. Research shows that the average U.S. household uses 138 gallons per day. If you take the town of Wilton as an example, there are about 6,000 households, some of which are on city water. If you estimate that ⅔ of the town is on well-water that means that the town is using about HALF of what the water company would take out of this aquifer in a day.

What This Means For Local Properties, Ecosystems And The Environment

Over-exploitation of the aquifer is a large concern in this case. Water is typically a renewable resource, but when an aquifer is over-exploited it can permanently damage the source leading to pollution of the water with nitrates or subsidence which can decrease aquifer capacity. These harmful pollutants further contaminate local water sources and habitats. The damage can be permanent and substantial.

The town of Wilton is conducting its own research to discover exactly how impactful and detrimental this project has the capacity to be. The impact of the diversion may be most notable in these areas:

It could negatively affect the life cycle of aquatic life in the Norwalk River including trout spawning
It could potentially have an effect on private wells
There is a notable pocket of White River Crayfish at Goetzen Brook whose life cycle could be negatively affected
Aquarion’s proposal includes mitigation plans such as periods of time when no pumping will occur, monthly monitoring of surface and groundwater levels, annual survey of vernal pool breeding, etc. Though these numbers and studies seem to provide a semblance of positivity, the overarching issue of whether the diversion can have an everlasting impact on the environment is looming.

Next Steps

We should all resolve to get better educated on this issue and follow it’s progress. Today it is a well in Wilton, but tomorrow it could be in your town. We should be active in keeping our local government accountable for making environmentally sound decisions and fighting for what’s right when necessary.