August 11, 2010

Wednesday’s Water News: Honolulu to Spend $3.5 Billion on Sewer System Improvements

Posted in Missouri, Montana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia at 1:00 pm by bengann

Honolulu has reached a consent decree agreement with the EPA requiring it to make more than $3.5 billion in improvements to its sewage treatment system by 2020, and also pay a $1.6 million fine  to be split between the federal government and the state to resolve violations of the federal Clean Water Act and Hawaii’s water pollution law.

Headlines
The city of Chattanooga, Tennessee’s sewer system has released 510 million gallons of untreated sewage into the Tennessee River over the past five years. Now a nonprofit group  is threatening to sue the city to enforce environmental compliance. 

In West Virginia, Wellsburg’s City Council is down to three members after five council members quit in a dispute over a proposed sewer rate hike. All five had opposed a plan to raise the city’s sewer rate by 30 percent. 

Downpours over the past two nights have overwhelmed Des Moines sewers and sent millions of gallons of untreated sewage into the Des Moines and Raccoon rivers. The city’s taxed sewer network has caused wastewater backups in basements throughout the city, with the heaviest concentrations on the south and east sides.

Stimulus spotlight
In Montana, improvements to Pondera County Canal and Reservoir’s infrastructure has boosted efficiency and improved the water quality of the lower Birch Creek watershed.  The project was financed with $527,000 in federal stimulus money and a $366,000 local match to upgrade irrigation infrastructure originally dug by hand and mule in the 1800s.

The city of Cape Girardeau, Missouri received $144,540 from the economic stimulus for engineering reports on the city water and wastewater systems. The funding will enable the city to hire an engineer to study their water system and advise them on how to achieve or maintain compliance with drinking water rules and regulations.

Sewer Rate News
Berryville, Virginia
Granville, Ohio
Warrenton, Virginia
Williamsport, Pennsylvania

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