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AS-EPA implements American Samoa cesspools inventory

(PRESS RELEASE) — The American Samoa Environmental Protection Agency (AS-EPA) is currently in the planning process to strategically outline the implementation of the Territorial Wide Cesspools/Cesspits Inventory for improvement of Government Drinking Water Systems.

American Samoa has been on Boil Water Notice (BWN) status since the year 2010. One of the major contributing factors to the contamination of our ground water is illegal cesspools/cesspits, because they allow contaminants to seep through our underground drinking water aquifers. In past years, American Samoa has relied solely on ground water resources for daily use but continues to detect bacteria’s in samples collected from bacteriological testing. To discontinue seepage of these contaminants to our aquifers removal of cesspools/cesspits is essential.

The objective of the Island Wide Cesspool/Cesspits Inventory is to identify all cesspools around Drinking Water Wells with the hope to encourage and work with owners to construct safe and legal cesspools. It is vital that these unsanitary and illegal systems are identified so solutions can be made to prevent underground drinking water contamination. AS-EPA and ASPA in a collaborative effort will target the non-compliant systems with their sanitary team and implement the needed solutions to bring the wastewater disposal systems into compliance.

AS-EPA anticipates a positive outcome for this initiative which will ultimately lead to a productive and healthy future. The community will have increased awareness of the proper wastewater disposal, reduction of e-coli in drinking water wells, reduced pollutant runoff to the reef, and the importance of having a standardized and approved septic system.

AS-EPA kindly asks for your assistance in making this project smooth and successful for better drinking water supply for American Samoa now and the future.

(Source: ASEPA media release)