Because of the coronavirus pandemic, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection is giving 21 communities an extra four months to submit plans for controlling sewage overflows, NJ Spotlight reports.
Combined sewers carry both sewage and stormwater to treatment plants. Heavy rains can cause the system to exceed its capacity. When that happens, excess liquid spills into rivers, lakes, and bays.
Reducing those overflows is expensive. Estimates for fixing the problem in New Jersey range from $8 billion to $14 billion.