Rivers are at the heart of the Pittsburgh region. The area’s economic and environmental revival is closely tied to its rivers, but unfortunately its aging and poorly designed sewer system is creating a crisis. As little as one-tenth of an inch of rain can cause raw sewage and other contaminants to overflow into local rivers.
Wednesday was the day that the “green infrastructure” approach to controlling the wet weather discharge of sewage into the region’s rivers, got their due, according to Jennifer Kennedy.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has signaled its willingness to give the Allegheny County Sanitary Authority much more time to implement a “green first” flow reduction strategy.
Mayor Bill Peduto and county Executive Rich Fitzgerald asked the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for a 10-year window to repair infrastructure and implement “green” projects.
The article “Alcosan’s Wet Weather Plan draws criticism” quotes an Alcosan representative as saying that we cannot fix our sewer overflow problem with rain barrels alone. That statement completely misrepresents the concept of green infrastructure.
Standing in front of an 8,000-square-foot black tarp on the banks of the Allegheny River to signify a large work area, several organizations and a Pittsburgh city official said they couldn’t stand behind ALCOSAN’s proposed plan for river-front construction.