Glossary

Aerobic: Any chemical process requiring high amounts of oxygen (ex.: composting toilets and aerobic tanks).

Anaerobic: In the absence of oxygen (ex. septic).

Bedrock: Solid rock exposed or close to the surface of the ground

Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD): Amount of oxygen microorganisms removed from water during decomposition of organic matter

Blackwater: Wastewater containing only toilet wastes

Carbon Dioxide (CO2): A gaseous end product of the aerobic process

Compost: Organic material that is the end product of complete decomposition of animal and vegetable waste by microorganisms

Composting: The process of turning wastes into compost

Decomposition: To break down wastes into compost

Distribution Box: Separates effluent into separate trenches or leach fields

Dosing: Periodic discharge of effluent to a distribution system

Effluent: Here “effluent” is regularly used to refer to the outflow from sewage treatment devices such as septic or aerobic tanks

Flush Toilet: A device that uses water and gravity to remove human waste

Greywater: Water containing household wastes from tubs, sinks, washing machines, etc. (everything except blackwater).

Groundwater: Water contained in the ground below the water table

Humus: See COMPOST

Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S): A gaseous by-produce of anaerobic processes; it smells like rotten eggs

Impervious: Any material which will not allow water to pass through (impermeable)

Methane (CH4): A gaseous combustible by-product of anaerobic processes

Microorganism: Here it is used to describe microscopic organisms (either plant or animal) present in the air, soil or water, which help break down wastes. Some microorganisms do this by consuming oxygen and are therefore part of an aerobic decomposition process; others use no oxygen and are therefore part of anaerobic waste breakdown

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation: The agency responsible for water pollution control laws in New York State. There is an office in the Dulles Sstate Office Building, Watertown

New York State Department of Health: The agency responsible for enforcement of public health law in New York State. There is an office in the Dulles State Office Building, Watertown

Pathogenic: Disease Causing organisms such as certain viruses and bacteria

Percolation: Movement of liquid downward through a porous medium such as soil, gravel or sand

Reverse Osmosis: Concentration of a contaminant on one side of a membrane, holding clean water on the other. This process requires use of a mechanical devise

Scum: Matter suspended in liquid which is less dense than that liquid and which therefore floats to the surface

Sewage: Human wastes discharged from the home. Greywater is also considered sewage under the law

Sludge: Matter which is denser than the liquid containing it and which sinks below the liquid

SPDES: State Pollution Discharge Elimination System permit, required to discharge to surface waters

Surface Water Discharge: Discharge into lakes, streams, rivers, ponds or wetlands


About Us

Founded in 1978, Save The River is a non-profit, member-supported environmental organization whose mission is to restore, preserve and protect the ecological integrity of the Upper St. Lawrence River through advocacy, education and research. Since 2004 Save The River has been a member of the Waterkeeper Alliance as the Upper St. Lawrence Riverkeeper.

Learn more »

The River

The St. Lawrence River is one of the largest Rivers in the world and a magnificent place to live, work and play. Save The River has been working for more than 35 years to protect the River for current and future generations.

Learn more »

Join or Give

Over half of Save The River's budget comes from individual memberships and contributions. Supporting us with an annual membership donation will keep our River advocacy, education and research programs going strong.

Learn more »


Save The River was designated the Upper St. Lawrence Riverkeeper and is a member of the international Waterkeeper Alliance. The Waterkeeper Alliance is the world’s fastest growing environmental movement, with more than 200 local Waterkeepers patrolling rivers, lakes and coastal waterways on 6 continents.


Photos from around the River

Off to the races by Pam Quimby  Resting by Pam Quimby  On the Rocks by Nick Apel  Classic Sunset by Barb Hupp  TI Park Library by Meg Kerr  Fall by Carrie Kerr  Girls by Juliane Bauer  Winter Navigation by Sherman Ward  Off on the River by Jenni Werndorf  A Seaway View by Devon Colby 
 Pictures from our Flickr photostream

409 Riverside Drive
Clayton, NY 13624

(315) 686-2010
info@savetheriver.org

 

© Save The River 2014