Low-Flow Toilets Cause Stink in San Francisco
San Francisco's big push for low-flow toilets has turned into a multimillion-dollar plumbing stink, according to a recent article from the San Francisco Chronicle.
The use of these low-flow toilets has resulted in 20 million gallons of water saved, but, according to Tyrone Jue, spokesman for the city Public Utilities Commission, it has also reportedly resulted in more sludge backing up inside the sewer pipes. It's blamed for a rotten-egg smell wafting through areas of the city, especially during summer months, according to the report.
The city has already spent $100 million over the past five years to upgrade its sewer system and sewage plants, in part to combat the odor problem. And now officials are stocking up on a $14 million, three-year supply of highly concentrated sodium hypochlorite — better known as bleach — to act as an odor eater and to disinfect the city's treated water before it's dumped into the bay. It will also be used to sanitize drinking water.
That translates into 8.5 million pounds of bleach either being poured down city drains or into the drinking water supply every year.
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