No that's just the truth.
Any area discharge rule that isn't backed up by a study with real numbers is nothing but politicians and tree huggers getting to give themselves backpats to tell people how they "did something"
Did you read the application? Pounds of pollutants? Number of heads? Did you research the regional value of nutrient removal/pound?
You may not agree with the conclusions, but this is about per-person impact, not trying to study a biom. Most arguments that say "boats don't change anything thing are a variation on "my vote does not matter." Your vote matters. Every single discharge matters.
To me, the relevant questions are:
* How does the cost of this compare to shore-side treatment? (It's not as much more expensive as you think--local pump-out costs range from free to $5).
* How does the cost compare to local nutrient reduction projects? This is a measure of what the community has agreed to. I'm not arguing whether that number is right.
* Does a boater somehow have a greater right to pollute than everyone else? A philosophical question. But if we didn't have sewage treatment, Chesapeake Bay boaters, for example, wouldn't be enjoying it. I know what the Potomac and Patapsco were like 50 years ago, and they would be far worse now.
The central problems is that it is really difficult to argue to a non-boater that a system that does not remove any pollutants is sewage treatment. Sounds a little fishy.
I don't know the answers. I know they vary according to the location.
As for the liveaboard issue, they are so few I bet they let that slide in the winter. In fact, these are mostly summer problems, for both population and temperature/biological reasons.