Delaware environmental chief OKs ocean wastewater discharge

(File/WHYY)

(File/WHYY)

Delaware’s environmental secretary has approved Rehoboth Beach’s plan to discharge the city’s treated wastewater into the Atlantic Ocean.

Officials said Thursday that the ocean outfall will eliminate discharges into Delaware’s Inland Bays.

City officials chose ocean outfall to comply with a court order to stop discharging effluent into the Lewes-Rehoboth Canal by June 2018.

But some local residents have expressed concern about the potential impacts to a shoal area that is an important habitat for several marine species, as well as water quality off the coast of one of the mid-Atlantic region’s busiest beach resorts.

State officials say the outfall will not appreciably affect the shoals, and that the city’s consultants have demonstrated that water quality, natural resources and public health would be protected by the alignment of the outfall.

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