John Marks/jmarks@lakewyliepilot.com - River Hills Marina dockmaster Chip Krell stands alongside Darrin, Anna and Durran Coley, owners of Commodore Yacht Club, Lake Club Marina and Tega Cay Marina. All four marinas received the first Lake Wylie Marine Commission designation as a Lake Wylie Clean Marina.

Four of the marinas on Lake Wylie, which sits on the border between North Carolina and South Carolina, have been certified by the Lake Wylie Marine Commission (LWMC) under the Clean Marina Program.

Under the program, the LWMC seeks to reinforce the environmental standards of the Lake Wylie area, the Lake Wylie Pilot reports. So far the Commodore Yacht Club, Lake Club Marina, River Hills Marina and Tega Cay Marina have been certified, indicating that they have met at least 80 percent of the environmental standards outlined by the group.

“This is the culmination of about 18 months of Clean Marina efforts,” Joe Stowe, executive director of the LWMC told the news source. He added, “We’ve been working with all the marinas on the lake to see if we can get a set of standards that would exemplify hard work in running a clean marina.”

The group’s standards for certification include emergency planning and maintenance as well as sewage and solid waste management.

Boaters can help meet these environmental goals by using macerator, waste pumps and waste tanks in their vessels. Macerator pumps grind waste from a marine toilet and pump the slurry to a black water holding tank, from which the waste can be “siphoned” out at a pump-out, when the boat is docked.

Reacting to the start of boating season on Long Island’s South Shore, marine law-enforcement officers are enforcing strict anti-sewage regulations that were enacted last November.

Under the new laws, the 173 square-mile South Shore Estuary was declared a No Discharge Zone (NDZ) by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Long Island Press reports. As an NDZ, it is illegal for boaters to flush their marine toilets into the waterway.

Boaters MUST use Pumpouts

Kevin McAllister, a marine biologist and executive director of the nonprofit environmental group Peconic Baykeeper, called the new regulations “a no-brainer.”

“Whether you have a marina setting or a popular anchorage, if you get 30, 50, 100 boats in a location and if everyone in the course of a holiday weekend is flushing their toilets, you can imagine that water is no longer suitable for swimming,” he added.

Marine Toilets

In light of these new rules, an approved waste system for a vessel must consist of a marine toilet and a holding tank. The tank would be emptied by a pump-out station while the boat is docked, thereby preventing sewage from polluting the water and avoid legal ramifications for the boater.

Jabsco manufactures marine toilets in compact sizes and larger household sizes, and also makes macerator and waste pumps available to help keep waterways clean.