In 2012, New York, USA enacted the Sewage Pollution Right to Know (SPRtK) Act, which requires public notification of untreated and partially treated sewage discharges. With the passing of this law, New York joined 12 other states that have similar laws but none as comprehensive as New York's. As part of the SPRtK Act requirements, aggregated sewage discharge reports (SDRs) are made available on the web. For this study, we made use of one year's worth of SDRs to identify spatial and temporal patterns in sewage discharge incidents. The SDRs were strongly associated with the type of municipality, density and age of the treatment plant. New York has some of the oldest infrastructure in the USA, and this law enables the state environmental agency to document instances of failure and take corrective action. Proper implementation of the law would place information in the hands of the people and protect public health.

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