Kari Lydersen

Recent Stories

Sprawl, climate change, carp control hinder Chicago sewer solution

Chicago already has an innovative system on a portion of Lake Shore Drive wherein the first flush of rainwater goes into sewers, but the majority of run-off is channeled into nearby Lake Michigan.

When more than two inches of rain falls in the Chicago area, the deluge flowing into storm sewers mixes with the wastewater from homes and businesses.   Often there is more water than the metropolitan area’s treatment plants can handle, so the excess is discharged untreated into the Chicago River and its connected waterways. Such Combined Sewer Overflows – CSOs – are common in Chicago and many other U.S. cities where storm water and municipal wastewater are funneled into the same aging combined sewer pipes. Milwaukee and other cities discharge CSOs into Lake Michigan. The discharges include high levels of bacteria, parasites, viruses, toxic metals including copper and cadmium, nutrient pollutants including phosphorus, and suspended solids. Continue Reading →

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