“Advisories with local waterways are occasionally issued, but they are associated with biological waste hazards from homes and businesses,” according to Frank Phillips, Ph.D., environmental professor at McNeese State University, “not due to industrial processes.”
The water treatment procedures at area industries utilize advanced biological technology to eliminate unwanted materials so water can be reused. In the event that the water is contaminated with oil, the oil is physically separated from the water and both are reprocessed by industry.
“Industries have to meet strict standards within their own facility, and they are certified by the Department of Environmental Quality to avoid any perceived bias,” Dr. Phillips said.
Industries reuse as much of the water as possible, because it makes good business sense to reduce waste. “The water is tested routinely before it’s discharged from the plant,” said Kevin McGee, environmental manager at local industry. “We aim to recycle, reuse, reduce and treat as much as possible because that just makes good business sense. As with any business, keeping production high and waste low is our goal; it’s good for the environment, and good for business.”
One of the reasons Louisiana is known as the Sportsman’s Paradise is because of the rich waterways. “Everyone – including local industry – plays a role in maintaining good water quality,” McGee said.