The Chicago Tribune reported that the lawsuit quotes a 2013 EPA study that found elevated lead in homes’ drinking water after city construction disrupted lead service lines and they failed to warn residents about the risk. City officials have questioned the EPA’s findings, claiming that Chicago’s water is completely safe from lead contamination.
“We see the patients, or the residents in Flint, Michigan, are actually the same patients that we see here in Rochester”.
The ongoing disaster in Flint, a city where 40% of people live in poverty, began in April 2014 when an emergency manager of the debt-stricken city made a decision to switch water supply to the Flint river, in a cost-cutting drive.
“It’s sent out at a higher PH that keeps the water less corrosive to the piping and makes it less likely for lead to dissolve in the water”, Water Utility Director Troy Hall said.
Under the emergency order, Flint was supposed to have “capable and qualified personnel” by February 5.
Michigan Department of Environmental Quality spokeswoman Melanie Brown said the agency was reviewing the letter and preparing a response.
Protesters were also calling for rebuilding the water system and other aging infrastructures like roads in Flint.
Harbin says at least one 18 wheeler loaded with bottled water will be heading from Rochester to Flint on Monday.
The state agency has acknowledged misreading federal regulations and wrongly instructing the city not to apply corrosion controls. She invoked her agency’s authority to compel action when “an immediate and substantial endangerment exists” and “local authorities are inadequate to protect public health”. And if a state doesn’t take action within 30 days, the federal agency should step in and enforce the law.
Snyder, who has apologized for his administration’s role in the lead contamination, credited lawmakers for working to get funding to the city quickly. That went on for a year and half, and resulted in lead being leached into people’s tap water – which in turn led to lead poisoning in some children.
He noted that the EPA order’s failure to distinguish between the city, as the water supplier, and the state, as the regulator, “continues to create confusion”.
The Tribune reported last week that city officials do little to caution Chicagoans that replacing old water mains under city streets could disrupt pipes’ protective coating – a scenario that is increasingly possible as Mayor Rahm Emanuel speeds up efforts to conserve water and prevent costly leaks.