MPCA SSTS Bulletin

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SSTS Bulletin

October 2014


Type I systems majority of 9,120 SSTS installed in 2013: Site conditions drive system selection decisions

In 2013, there were 9,120 SSTS installed in Minnesota, as reported by local governmental units in their annual reporting to the MPCA. The breakdown of the  types of systems installed are shown in the chart below. Nearly 80 percent of the systems installed (7,196 out of 9,120) were reported to be Type I residential systems.

ssts chart

Type I systems include in-ground trenches and beds and above-ground at-grades and mounds. Mound systems represented roughly 43 percent of all installations in 2013. MPCA SSTS Manager Jim Zieger says it's important for residents and others to understand that the type of SSTS system that is chosen by a designer for a particular site is based on the type of soil present and the depth to the seasonal high groundwater. "The designer is going to choose the most economical system for a location that will adequately protect human health and groundwater," Zieger says.

"That decision is always based on a careful evaluation of the depth and type of soil present and the distance to where the soil shows indications of periodic saturation. In other words, the highest level that groundwater reaches on a seasonal or periodic basis."

You can read the full 2013 Annual Report on the web.

Below are two examples of Type I systems being installed: a chamber system, left, and trench system. A detailed cross-section of a trench system is shown at right.


SSTS Advisory Committee looking to fill 10 spots


Members of the SSTS Advisory Committee pose with Gretchen Sabel (front, center) prior to her retirement this summer from the MPCA.

The SSTS Advisory Committee is looking for men and women to fill 10 specific roles on the committee. The committee has 21 voting members and several non-voting members. The committee meets four times per year – either in person or remotely via WebEx. Lunch is provided when we meet in person. 

The committee advises the MPCA on a wide variety of SSTS issues. The meeting time is generally from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

If you are interested in filling one of these positions, please contact Aaron Jensen for an application.

           Advisory Committee Vacancies:

  • 2 citizens at large
  • 1 elected official
  • 1 Professional from NE Minnesota
  • 1 Professional from NW Minnesota
  • 1 Professional from SW Minnesota
  • 1 Water well contractor
  • 1 Association of Home Inspector representative (non-voting)
  • 1 Minnesota Environmental Health Association representative (non-voting)
  • 1 Small Business Administration representative (non-voting)

Many SSTS professional certifications expiring this year; sign up now for the courses you need

Did you know that more than one third of all SSTS professionals in Minnesota have an expiration date of December 31 for licensing purposes? Currently, 165 individuals have still not received continuing education credit for their upcoming deadline of Dec. 31, 2014. This is a quick reminder to sign up for continuing education if you haven’t met your requirements in the past three years.