July 4, 2007 |
During big storms that cause sewer backups, desperate Philadelphia homeowners have reached for mop handles, baseball bats, rags - anything - to plug drains and prevent wastewater from flooding their homes. Now the city is offering to pay for what it hopes is a more effective fix. Starting this week, the Philadelphia Water Department is taking orders to install "backwater valves" in flood-prone homes in three areas: South Philadelphia; Northern Liberties and the adjacent community of Old Kensington; and Washington Square West.
June 13, 2007 |
What's worse? Living near a manhole that blows its lid during big storms, spewing raw sewage into the Poquessing Creek? Or living next to an underground sewage holding tank the size of two stacked Olympic swimming pools? It's a choice confronting residents of East Torresdale and a dilemma pitting some members of City Council against the Philadelphia Water Department. The department has known since 2004 that a sewer line running parallel to the Poquessing Creek gets overwhelmed during heavy storms, sending a torrent of sewage directly into the stream.
March 14, 2007
Clean water: Priceless I am a long-time Rotarian, and I am proud to belong to an organization that provides humanitarian help around the world. One of the major projects that many clubs are involved in is providing clean-water systems to villages. I read in the March 8 Inquirer about legislation pending in Washington that would endorse federal help for communities faced with deteriorating sewage systems ("House OKs bill to aid sewage treatment). The money would go to modernize wastewater systems and control sewage overflows that cause pollution.
January 30, 2007 |
ANYONE DRIVING across the Platt Bridge has smelled it. Visitors and residents often ask what the foul odor is, and why something can't be done about it. The source of the smell is the city's Biosolids Recycling Center, which processes tons of sewage each year. While the sludge is turned into biosolids used in landfills and fertilizer, the process has polluted our air for decades and violates clean-air standards. Environmental laws are also making disposal in landfills more difficult and more expensive.
October 15, 2006 |
Pennsport residents fed up with raw-sewage backups in their basements didn't get the answers they wanted at a Delaware Riverfront 2015 symposium at the Independence Seaport Museum yesterday. They wanted the government to figure out why the sewage had become more common in recent years, and they wondered whether Delaware Avenue development had anything to do with it and whether four planned riverside casinos would make it worse. Instead, they got a partial answer. Leonard Bernstein, an engineer and special-projects coordinator with the city Water Department, said more frequent and intense rainstorms had flushed gallons of storm water into the septic sewer system, causing the backups.
April 21, 2006 |
The superintendent of the Bristol Township sewage plant did not deliberately pollute the Delaware River, his lawyer said after a guilty plea in federal court yesterday. Steven McClain fouled the river with untreated sewage accidentally while trying to juggle too many tasks, said his attorney, Louis R. Busico. McClain will be sentenced July 20 after pleading guilty to discharging thousands of gallons of sewage into the river at least twice in 2004 and to falsifying test results.
March 10, 2006 |
Federal authorities charged two Bristol Township employees with felony violations of the Clean Water Act yesterday on allegations that they dumped untreated sewage into the Delaware River. The sludge polluted a section of the river with fecal coliform bacteria. There is no indication that drinking water was affected, the Environmental Protection Agency says. The charges were lodged nearly nine months after EPA investigators carted boxes of files from the Bristol Township Wastewater Treatment Plant and authorities subpoenaed workers.
January 27, 2006 |
In western Chester County, where tract houses nudge Amish farms, and buggies share the road with SUVs, major development in four fast-growing communities has come to a halt for more than two years. The problem is sewage. The state has stopped the planned construction of at least 1,500 homes, along with additional retail and office space, because the area's privately owned sewage plant doesn't have the capacity to handle the wastewater generated by thousands more people. In a worst-case scenario, the plant in South Coatesville eventually could have dumped raw sewage into Brandywine Creek.
August 24, 2005 |
Environmental advocates called on the state yesterday to ban the hiring of consultants who work simultaneously for the Department of Environmental Protection and polluters regulated by the agency. In one case, a firm working to establish DEP cleanup standards for two Central Jersey rivers also was working for the sewage dischargers along those waters, the advocates alleged. They released DEP internal e-mails that showed scientists and various supervisors raising red flags and questions about whether the agency would remedy the situation.
August 10, 2005
As the leader of IBEW Local 98 and chairman of the Redevelopment Authority, I am staunchly pro-development. Unfortunately, rapid development comes with a price. All this new construction is covering up an antiquated sewer system that is crumbling under our feet. There is an immediate need for an inter-governmental action plan to replace Philadelphia's sewer infrastructure. As president of the Pennsport Civic Association in South Philadelphia, I have heard from numerous residents about repeat floods.