Two Iowa cities are pumping partially treated waste into rivers, but an Iowa Department of Natural Resources spokesman says it’s not a major concern. Monticello is pumping some 330-thousand gallons of sewage a day into the Maquoketa River and Anamosa is pumping 474-thousand gallons per day into the Wapsipinicon River. D-N-R spokesman Kevin Baskins says it’s not raw sewage.He says the only treatment missing is a beam of ultraviolet light. Baskins says the ultraviolet treatment helps kill off fecal bacteria in the sewage.He says the ultraviolet treatment does the same thing that sunlight does to lakes and rivers. State officials are recommending that people stay out of the water in these areas, but Baskins says it’s not because of the lack of water treatment.He says floodwaters have already raised the bacteria levels in the water and prompted the warning even without the sewage flowing into the water. He says while the sewage could pose some problems for people, that’s the extent of its threat. Baskins says the high bacteria levels don’t bother fish and other water animals. Baskins says the cities are monitoring the bacteria levels until the u-v equipment can be repaired. It could be another week or two before the equipment is repaired.
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