Many residents and small communities in the rural Alabama Black Belt lack access to functioning wastewater infrastructure because of low population density, low-income levels, and clay soils that won’t allow traditional septic tank and drainfield systems to work. It is estimated that 50% of rural residents have failing onsite wastewater systems or directly discharge raw sewage to the ground surface. Inadequate sewage disposal can result in unhealthy exposure to viruses, bacteria, and parasites, which can lead to both public health and environmental health problems. The lack of appropriate wastewater infrastructure also limits the possibility of needed economic development. Please read more about the issues here.
In response to these public health, environmental health, and socioeconomic issues facing the rural, underserved communities in the Black Belt, many groups have taken an interest in finding solutions. In 2018, the Consortium for Alabama Rural Water and Wastewater Management was formed to facilitate communication and collaboration between the Alabama regulatory community, academic institutions, elected officials, community groups, and representatives from the water and wastewater industry for the purpose of finding equitable and sustainable solutions together. Please read more about our projects here.
Members of the Consortium recognize the need to address the improper water and wastewater access issues in the Black Belt and have voluntarily agreed to coordinate efforts to help find solutions to poor drinking water quality and inadequate wastewater management and access. Individuals and organizations interested in participating in the Consortium may contact a Consortium member utilizing the contact information listed below. Membership in the Consortium is free and voluntary. For more details on how the Consortium is organized and functions, please see our Consortium Agreement here.
Consortium members include:
This institution is an equal opportunity provider.