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Everybody Poops

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Over the last weekend in August, a hurricane-related power outage led to about 17 million gallons of sewage spilling into the Patapsco River. The total amount of sewage released into the Patapsco and other area waterways due to the storm came to about 70 million gallons.


For perspective:

Between its various waste processing facilities, the city of Baltimore handles about 210 million gallons of sewage daily. Some of that comes from Anne Arundel and Baltimore counties.

The average person is responsible for between 5 and 19.5 gallons of that per day, depending on the toilet.

The Patapsco River, as of Monday, Sept. 12, carries about 400 million gallons of water per day.

The Chesapeake Bay holds over 15 trillion gallons of water. Its main source of fresh water is the Susquehanna River, which carries about 150 billion gallons of water per day.

Of the many parasites, parasitic worms, viruses, and bacteria that love to party in untreated waste water, the parasite Cryptosporidiosis stands tall. In 1993, it left at least 54 dead in Milwaukee due to contamination. Symptoms include watery, persistent diarrhea, cramps, and a low fever.

Last year, storms caused more than 2 billion gallons of untreated sewage and storm water to flow into Lake Michigan and nearby Milwaukeee-area rivers.

The total volume of Loch Raven Reservoir is about 23 billion gallons.

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