TVM Sector Perspective
How Sector Activities Impact People, Place, Planet and Profit
Chapter 20 - Sewage
Sewage is an important piece of the infrastructure that is needed for a safe, healthy society. Many, if not most, cities and towns have sewage systems that are inadequate, some grossly inadequate.
Classes of sewage include (1) domestic or sanitary, commercial, (2) industrial, and (3) agricultural and surface runoff.
The wastewater from residences and institutions, carrying body wastes, washing water, food preparation wastes, laundry wastes, and other waste products of normal living, are classed as domestic or sanitary sewage. Liquid-carried wastes from stores and service establishments serving the immediate community, termed commercial wastes, are included in the sanitary or domestic sewage category if their characteristics are similar to household flows.
Wastes that result from an industrial process or the production or manufacture of goods are classed as industrial wastewater. Their flows and strengths are usually more varied, intense, and concentrated than those of sanitary sewage.
Surface runoff, also known as storm flow or overland flow, is that portion of precipitation that runs rapidly over the ground surface to a defined channel. Precipitation absorbs gases and particulates from the atmosphere, dissolves and leaches materials from vegetation and soil, suspends matter from the land, washes spills and debris from urban streets and highways, and carries all these pollutants as wastes in its flow to a collection point.