Flushable Wipes and Other Non-Dispersible Products

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Clean water agencies across the country are increasingly dealing with problems caused by wipes and other products that do not break down quickly in the sewer system. Utilities are spending millions of dollars to respond to overflows, clean these products out of their pumps and other equipment, and to replace equipment that should have had more useful years of service.  NACWA, the Water Environment Federation (WEF), and the American Public Works Association (APWA) are working together to address this problem.  This page provides resources and references related to the wipes issue.

Given the far-reaching impacts of wipes and other products on clean water agencies, NACWA launched a new campaign to protect pipes, pumps, and plants by reducing the harmful materials that are flushed or drained into the sewer system. These products include wipes, pharmaceuticals, paper towels, feminine hygiene products, dental floss, FOG (fats, oils, and greases), as well as product additives such as triclosan.

If you have materials to add to this page, please send them to Cynthia Finley.

 

What's New

  • The staff at NEW Water in Green Bay, Wisconsin, delivers an important holiday message with "O Love Your Pipes!"
  • The City of Keene, New Hampshire, worked with local high school students to create this public service announcement, Don't Flush That. Congratulations to the City of Keene and the students for putting together this great video!
  • A segment on The Dr. Oz Show (part 1, part 2external.link focusing on flushable wipes aired Tuesday, September 9.  The segment featured Dr. Oz’s visit to a treatment plant of NACWA member agency the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to learn more about the problems wipes cause for wastewater utilities.  The segment also includes Cynthia Finley, NACWA’s Director of Regulatory Affairs, as an in-studio guest on the show. We invite Member Agencies to use this airing as an opportunity to engage in social media to raise the awareness of the wipes issue and NACWA’s Toilets Are Not Trash Cans! campaign.

     

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