From lead pipes to PFAS, drinking water contamination is a major issue plaguing cities and towns all around the Great Lakes. Cleaning up contaminants and providing safe water to everyone is an ongoing public health struggle.
Keep up with drinking water-related developments in the Great Lakes area.
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The Minnesota Department of Agriculture is reminding farmers and landowners that beginning Sept. 1, 2020, the application of nitrogen fertilizer in the fall and on frozen soil will be restricted in areas vulnerable to groundwater contamination.
This will also apply to Drinking Water Supply Management Areas with elevated nitrate levels. Vulnerable groundwater areas include coarse-textured soils, karst geology and shallow bedrock.
Two years ago, a dozen or so Adirondack homeowners prepared to sue the state of New York for polluting their drinking water. They had evidence that road salt dumped by the state Department of Transportation was flowing into their wells, making their water unsafe to drink and reducing their property values.
Their lawsuit never got off the ground. In New York, residents who want to take the state to court often have just 90 days to file a lawsuit. Such rigid filing deadlines undermined the residents’ case and have insulated the state in other cases where the DOT has said it is likely polluting water supplies with road salt.
Calling Toledo’s request for an eight-month delay “acceptable,” the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency is giving the city until April 30 to substantially complete installation of a more advanced type of treatment technology at its Collins Park Water Treatment Plant.
At a cost of $55 million, the upcoming ozone technology is a cornerstone of some $500 million of improvements the city began phasing in after a blue-ribbon panel of experts assessed needs in response to the algae-driven water crisis that made tap water unsafe to drink or touch for nearly three days in 2014. The state agency originally wanted the new technology operational by 2017.
Drilling fluid used in Sunoco Pipeline LP’s Mariner East project in Chester County leaked into Marsh Creek Lake at a state park of the same name on Monday — one of three incidents in recent days along the pipeline construction project.
The liquid used for drilling, which typically contains bentonite clay and water, is not normally hazardous, though environmental groups say it could contain other chemicals. The Clean Air Council estimated that 1,000 gallons of the drilling fluid were released into Marsh Creek Lake, which also serves as a drinking water reservoir.
In Pennsylvania, the final destination of 66 percent of liquid waste from 30 municipal landfills accepting fracking’s oil and gas waste remains unknown. Oil and gas waste from fracking contains high concentrations of…