Saturday, April 13, 2019 1:58 PM EST
By The Associated Press, AP
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — How much untreated sewage gets dumped in Alabama's Black Belt?
That's the question a team of students and professors at the University of Alabama is trying to determine.
In many parts of the Black Belt, homeowners are resorting to "straight pipe" systems to dispose of wastewater and sewage, rather than sewers or septic tanks. In those instances, untreated wastewater and sewage are simply flushed out of a plain PVC pipe from the house into the woods, or even the back yard, raising concerns about tropical diseases like hookworm and other public health issues.
Al.com reports University of Alabama graduate students and professors, backed by a federal grant, are joining efforts to determine just how widespread these practices are and what can be done about them.