What is the difference between sewage and sewer?

Sewage and sewer are related terms, but they refer to different elements of wastewater management:

  1. Sewage:
    • Sewage refers to the wastewater generated from domestic, commercial, and industrial sources. It contains a mixture of human waste, soaps, detergents, food residues, and other organic and inorganic materials.
    • Sewage is produced from various activities such as flushing toilets, taking showers, washing dishes, and industrial processes.
    • It is considered a type of wastewater and requires proper management to prevent water pollution and protect public health and the environment.
  2. Sewer:
    • A sewer is a system of underground pipes or conduits that transport sewage and sometimes stormwater runoff from homes, businesses, and industries to wastewater treatment facilities or disposal points.
    • The sewer system includes a network of pipes, manholes, and lift stations that facilitate the movement of sewage to its destination for appropriate treatment or discharge.

In summary, sewage refers to the wastewater generated from human and industrial activities, while a sewer is the infrastructure, typically a network of pipes, designed to collect and transport sewage to treatment facilities or disposal points. The sewer system is essential for managing sewage effectively, ensuring that it is safely transported and treated to prevent water pollution and protect public health.

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