The bell has tolled, it’s a new age.
I support Mayor Mike Duggan and his efforts to start a new page of civic responsibility in the city.
— In my opinion, in #Detroit –
Where 30,000 people owe
$ 30 MILLION DOLLARS ;
many are simply hustling everyone
for Tap Water Service they
take for granted daily.
~Garnish Welfare Checks Now ~
Recoup costs by force for Detroit.
If people don’t value and respect clean, clear, drinkable, water on tap, in their households, SHUT it off now. Make it a dry holiday Memorial Weekend and watch how fast the cash pours in. A conscious deliberate choice was made, NOT to pay a small monthly water bill.
Now its a big bill….so what !
It still needs to be paid. RainBarrels might answer many folks prayers.
Drinkable water pumped into households will never be free.
Are there exceptions, “unique” circumstances, sure there are,
But Not 30,000 of them.
Many massive sewage infrastructure contractors consistently appear
in mayoral and council campaign finance reports as generous contributors.
Most Michigan Drain Commissioners are elected to office.
They are public officials who function under Michigan law
to build and maintain infrastructure worth millions/billions.
Drain Commissioners run political campaigns and have fund raisers
often hosted by sewage infrastructure contractors as well.
Who or What acts as the “”Checks and Balances”” for
fair play, integrity, justice, etc in political campaigns?
Most residents have no clue where stormwater goes,
the costs associated with the infrastructure,
or the political wrangling between counties.
Perhaps there needs to be some reform in the
Political Contribution process in light of
Racketeering (RICO) Case involving
– Macomb Interceptor Drainage District (MIDD)
– Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD)
– City of Detroit
Now with the GLWA – Great Lakes Water Authority in the mix,
along with unique INTERCOUNTY agreements already in place,
the entire political process gets ever stranger.
The Oakland-Macomb Interceptor Drainage District (OMIDD)
was established under Chapter 21 of the Michigan Drain Code.
One of the unique characteristics of a “Chapter 21” district
is that the district is physically located in multiple counties.
In this case, the OMIDD is in both Oakland and Macomb counties.
We already had the 12 Towns Drainage District which takes
stormwater from Oakland County and rams it through Warren
via the Red Run Drain into the Clinton River and Lake St. Clair.
A reminder of the OMIDD project of which Warren needs to be
a part of , to aid flooding / surcharging of existing systems.
– An excellent article written by Scott Henderson , well worth reading in its entirety. Water is truly mispriced in the USA, it is too cheap. The author hits on many similar issues facing the GLWA, DWSD and MetroDetroit.
The business case for investments in water efficiency
Tuesday, April 28, 2015
The U.S. has experienced a renaissance in energy efficiency investment over the past decade, spurred by a combination of rising energy prices, greater public awareness of climate change and a thriving ecosystem of capital providers, government programs and technical solutions.
Now it’s time to pursue a similar level of investment in water.
With decade-long droughts forecasted in the U.S., it is easy to see how water efficiency projects in buildings will become a massive investment opportunity. This opportunity will be further enabled by innovative solutions in water technology as well as financing models already used by the energy efficiency industry including third-party ownership structures such as Efficiency Service Agreements (ESAs).
For Californians, not a week goes by without a reminder of how untenable our current water situation is. Whether it’s the record-setting drought, Gov. Jerry Brown’s recent announcement of a statewide mandate to cut water use by 25 percent, our outdated water and land use laws whose “use it or lose it” provisions lead some of our largest water customers to consume way more than they need, the persistent mispricing of water services or the aging infrastructure that we rely on for collecting, treating and distributing water, we need to fundamentally change the way we manage this resource.
The following statistics show just how fragile our country’s water infrastructure has become:
$600 billion — The amount of dollars required to repair all U.S. water infrastructure by 2019 (source: EPA)
$384 billion — The amount of dollars required to maintain U.S. public drinking water systems through 2030 (source: EPA)
250,000 — The number of water lines that burst in the U.S. each year (source: New York Times)
20 percent — The percentage of water supplies lost to leaks in U.S. cities annually (source: U.S. GAO)
The figures are staggering. Especially when you consider that the federal government has been cutting, not increasing, spending on U.S. water infrastructure. It is also highly unlikely that local and state governments will be able to shoulder this financial burden alone. As a point of comparison, in 2012 and 2013 U.S. municipalities’ allocation of long-term bond proceeds to investments in water and sewage facilities were only $39 billion and $29 billion, respectively. All indicators point to a sharp increase in water prices for U.S. building owners and consumers.
Historically, water agencies generally price water based on their capital investments and operating costs, or the “delivery cost” of water. But this approach assumes that the water they sell has no value in and of itself. After you take into account the scarcity value of water as well as the massive federal subsidies that many water agencies receive and the negative impacts that water use can have on the environment, especially our steady depletion of natural aquifers, the “true cost” of water is far from the price customers see on their water bill.
To understand how mispriced our water really is, consider that the U.S. pays roughly $1.50 per cubic meter on average, while Denmark pays almost $4, Germany over $3.30, and even Portugal shells out more than $1.75. And those countries use less than a third of the water we do, on a daily average per capita basis.
Even within our borders, discrepancies in water pricing can be astounding. Consider that farmers in the Imperial Irrigation District in Southern California pay $20 per acre-foot for water, incentivizing many farmers to resort to flood irrigation to grow water-intensive crops in an otherwise exceptionally arid region. Meanwhile,residents 100 miles due west in San Diego pay more than 10 times that amount for their water.
Although thermoelectric power plants and farm irrigation constitute a whopping 77 percent of total water withdrawals in the U.S., public water supplies represent 12 percent. Within that smaller block, commercial and industrial (C&I) buildings represent 17 percent.
Water is currently relatively inexpensive for C&I customers. Yet a recent survey by theHamilton Project reported that over 60 percent of respondents in the industrial and consumer products manufacturing sectors believe they are exposed to water risks such as water scarcity, rising prices and/or regulatory changes. Business owners and managers are recognizing that water is likely to become a far more valuable commodity.
Why not contract out water efficiency management?
Several energy efficiency project development and finance companies have been created over the last five to seven years to help C&I customers address these types of concerns over water. Borrowing a model from the infrastructure industry, these developers fund, own and maintain an energy efficiency project in a customer’s facility.
The developer signs an Efficiency Services Agreement (or ESA) with the customer, in which the developer agrees to cover 100 percent of the up-front and ongoing expenditures of the project, and then charge the customer only for the savings that are realized, largely de-risking the project for the customer.
The ESA is an extension of the power purchase agreement (PPA), which has been used with great effect by developers in the renewable and conventional power markets.
A host of existing technologies and interventions are commercially available and proven to reduce water consumption in buildings in a cost-effective manner. These efficiency measures generally fall into two categories: measures that reduce the energy required to treat, distribute and collect/recycle water; and measures that conserve and/or recycle water.
The most common water efficiency measures include sanitary fixture upgrades such as aerated faucets and low-flush toilets, installing rainwater collection systems, practicing landscape irrigation/xeriscaping, and switching cooling towers from a single-pass to closed-loop system. Some building owners are installing systems that can treat their so-called “blackwater” onsite and then feed it back into the building for flushing toilets or use in the cooling towers, saving the owner up to 90 percent in water and sewer charges.
Anecdotally, conventional cooling towers consume the greatest amount of water in C&I buildings. Upgrading that tower to a closed loop system (where the same water is used five to seven times before being discarded) can result in a payback of two to three years. In fact, the average payback period for investing in water-efficient technologies in C&I facilities is one to four years. Some investments even have a payback period of less than one year when avoided wastewater charges and energy costs are considered.
Despite their shorter payback periods, water efficiency projects to date rarely have been pursued by building owners as stand-alone projects. The artificially low price of water results in an expense within building operations that is not significant enough to justify the investment of time and resources needed to pursue a capital improvement project. As a result, it has been more common to see water efficiency measures implemented as part of a much larger energy efficiency project.
However, as water and sewer services continue to rise in price and as environmental impacts reduce the water supply even further, it is likely that we will see more building owners pursue stand-alone water efficiency projects.
Although water is relatively cheap today, the data suggest that this cannot continue indefinitely. The scarcity value and true cost of operating a reliable infrastructure network necessitate that water customers, including C&I building owners, pay more for this finite resource. Rather than simply reacting to the new reality of our water supply, as scarcity increasingly becomes a business risk, building owners have an opportunity to proactively manage their water consumption through efficiency. Financing, of course, will be a critical step in this process. Luckily, energy efficiency project developers stand ready to provide owners with the flexible financing solutions such as ESAs to make water efficiency projects a reality.
House of Representatives is expected to vote on the
Regulatory Integrity Protection Act (HR 1732)—a bill that would set back efforts by the U.S. EPA Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps USACE
to provide strong Clean Water Act protections around the country.
Take action, contact representatives, educate yourself on water infrastructure issues concerning your family.
I wonder how the formation of the Great Lakes Water Authority (GLWA) affects the final outcome for The City of Warren Michigan getting connected to the OMID project.
Warren doesn’t deserve to see any flooding events occur in the future.
Hopefully the mayor will announce some good news soon in the media when The City of Warren gets some wet weather relief.
~~click to enlarge ~~
Progress moves forward with no regard for politicians, leaders, rulers or their past history.
It is relentless, steamrolling over those who stand in its way.
L Brooks Patterson made a decision to keep an old drainage system in Oakland County
– pure and simple.
The system in place for the 12TownsSewageDistrict of Oakland County relies on storm water mixing with sewage.
Macomb County has separated drains – one for rainstorms – one for sewage from toilets.
Communities with combined sewage overflow systems (CSOs) are outdated in 2015, they lead to overflows that pollute.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), about 850 billion gallons of untreated wastewater and storm water are released through CSOs each year in the United States.
Federal guidelines require municipalities to renovate these outdated systems to protect human health and the environment.
L Brooks Patterson has repeatedly commented in the media that Oakland County is wealthy, it has a healthy economy, etc etc.
Oakland County is full of cash.
No one would say Oakland County is struggling, impoverished, run down, or in need of help.
Years of being a selfish island ensured its economic vitality.
Time to pay up, fix the outdated combined sewer systems, eliminate the CSO discharges into the Clinton River via Red Run.
The National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA) represents sewer districts and it realizes communities need to evolve forward.
Oakland County continues to lay more concrete, more asphalt, develop land — all of which forces more water into the drains.
Time to modernize, contribute to all citizens of Metro Detroit , via purified, sanitized, clean water discharge, every day of the year.
Straining the feces, adding some bleach, retaining the water a bit, doesn’t really cut it anymore. The old system is often overwhelmed and contributes to flooding downstream.
It would appear all things water are controlled, managed, usurped, etc by OaklandCounty.
A number of items concerning water over the years seem to “occur” as MacombCounty officials stand silent in the process. I would say submissive, versus, dominant.
OaklandCounty cannot drain itself. It is in effect landlocked, NEEDING other counties to “allow” storm water to flow to lower elevations.
Will officials in MacombCounty actually take a stand for their citizens – or merely continously cowtow to OaklandCounty’s wishes ? People have short memories. Instead of doing sewage properly – OaklandCounty took the cheap easy way out. https://redrundrain.wordpress.com/2015/03/15/12-towns-drain-lbrooksp/
Environment, clean water, recreation were NOT the priorities of
L Brooks Patterson in the past.
He did not seem concerned one bit.
Why should anyone trust the GLWA
now in 2015, if it is all 1 sided ? Hopefully no one gets steamrolled.
April 9th, 2015 has severe weather alerts all around Warren, Michigan
NOAA forecast Tonight:
Showers and possibly a thunderstorm before 4am,
then a chance of showers and thunderstorms between 4am and 5am, then a chance of thunderstorms after 5am.
Low around 51. South southwest wind 11 to 16 mph, with gusts as high as 34 mph.
Chance of precipitation is 80%.
New rainfall amounts between a half and three quarters of an inch
This is a view of Red Run at Ryan Road in Warren, MI near 8 pm
Detroit supposedly HAD electronic systems in place to track excessive water usage, leaks, etc back in 2007. Why is there all the chaos over -unpaid- water bills from industrial and residential customers in 2014 and 2015 ?
Back from in January 2007
Itron Inc. announced that is had signed a subcontract to provide the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD) with Itron’s advanced Water Fixed Network. The contract included ServiceLink, Itron’s wireless automated dispatching/communications solution, to manage field operations more efficiently by eliminating paperwork in the field.
Itron’s Water Fixed Network (WFN) combined high-powered two-way endpoints, network collectors with flexible backhaul options, and a robust data collection engine that took fixed network technology for meter reading at water utilities beyond simple monthly consumption data. WFN could collect daily water meter readings and, through its powerful data logging functionality, provide consumption data that could be used for resource management and conservation programs.
More than 275,000 water endpoints were deployed in the City of Detroit, allowing DWSD to be proactive in detecting water leaks behind the meter, alleviating large bills for unused water and associated billing disputes.
DWSD was supposed to see benefits from Itron’s Water Fixed Network system in a number of ways including increased revenues (due to leak detection and elimination of billing errors), operational savings from reading more meters in a shorter amount of time with less people, improved cash flow from moving to monthly billing and savings from encouraging customers to conserve according to Victor Mercado, former director of DWSD. “””We also expect to see additional benefits as we gain experience with running the system and obtaining on-demand and interval data reads, along with the collection of data.”””
“””Our customers want us to eliminate estimated reads and we want to reduce special meter reads that create additional trips for our meter readers.””” Mercado said. “””With two-way communication, we can program meters without leaving the office.”””
“””The opportunity at Detroit is exciting because you have a city that is using technology to provide its customers with exceptional performance, accuracy and customer service,”””said Malcolm Unsworth, senior vice president, hardware solutions. “””Itron’s water fixed network provides Detroit with advanced, two-way communication for streamlined meter reading and leak detection that will enable Detroit to improve efficiency and maintain flexibility for future growth.”””
Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Michigan
Thursday, May 22, 2014
I had written about the upgrades to the Detroit Radio Network in a prior post
We have been lucky with the early spring season so far. The ground has had a chance to thaw slowly, allowing rainfall to soak in a bit.
Frozen ground combined with heavy rainfall can create flooding.
Easter is approaching and snowfall will be nothing but a memory. The radar reports have nothing to be worried about, enjoy the holiday.
Hard severe extended rainfall on solid frozen ground
is often recipe for flooding along the tributaries
of the Clinton River and drainage systems.
Frozen ground forces rain runoff into the stormdrain pipes
which are easily overloaded, causing backups in the system.
So far during March 2015 we have a LOT of sunshine.
~~~~~~~ click to enlarge images seen below ~~~~~~
HOW to read the graph data
Hopefully people have updated their insurance policies and
followed up with FEMA representatives for the new maps.
My guess , my gut feeling, is that local governments did little
in response to our last flooding event. Many officials “”claimed””
everything functioned perfectly and nothing could be done about it.
The systems were built 50 years ago, the pipes buried long long ago.
It is now 2015 and everything is covered in concrete, asphalt, etc.
The rain drops no longer soak in the ground, they are rammed into an
inadequate system, poorly equipped to handle hard rainfall.
Hopefully a few projects offer a bit of relief, I have doubts.
Warren needs to be connected to The Interceptor project.
Back in 1988 – Workers for Enbridge’s Lakehead Pipe Line used propane torches to burn crude oil off the banks of the Clinton River in Bruce Township.
BY MARK LOWERY
Free Press Staff Writer
– A Wisconsin company began a controlled burn along the banks of the Clilnton River in Bruce Township on Thursday to clean up residue from a 320,000-gallon crude oil leak in June. The Lakehead Pipe Line Co. of Superior, Wis., started burning the crude oil along a two-mile stretch of river between Brown Road and Thirty-four Mile Road. The operation is expected to last two days. Lakehead representatives and officials from the state Department of Natural Resources say the controlled burn is the best way to clean up the remaining oil without causing additional environmental damage. “At this point, what damage that was going to occur, did occur,” said James Goodheart, a wildlife biologist with the DNR. Goodheart said the spill and a resulting fire disrupted wildlife in and around the river and nearby wetlands. On June 16, oil leaked from an underground Lakehead pipe that carries crude oil from Alberta, Canada, to Buffalo. Workers attempting to repair the broken pipeline struck a pipe with a backhoe, sparking a fire. The fire swept several acres of nearby farmland. The leak was caused by corrosion, and Lakehead’s clean up costs may reach $1 million, company officials said. Flames from the controlled burn are not expected to be taller than 18 inches, and straw bales will be put in the river to prevent ashes from falling in, company officials said.
A recent article in the Advisor and Source Newspapers by SEAN DELANEY showed Brian Baker receiving an award from Mark Hackel. Brian Baker has been extremely quiet regarding the GLWA in SouthEast Michigan.
Brian Baker was recently ””recognized for his role in facilitating comprehensive management and structural change for improved efficiency, cost reduction and accountability as a member of the Great Lakes Water Authority, which oversees the wholesale water rate-setting process for 17 communities in Macomb County and the 11 county communities on the regional sewer system.”””
The article goes on to explain “”Brian Baker worked extensively on the water and sewer rate-setting process for the past 28 years. He also serves on the Project Oversight Committee reviewing Detroit Water and Sewerage Department efficiencies and recommended best practices.””
Will we ever hear directly from Brian Baker , as our GLWA representative , for The City of Warren ? Is he always going to be behind the scenes, lurking in the shadows, quiet, shy, and let others release info on his behalf ?
Oakland and Macomb Counties share numerous Inter-County Drain concerns affecting 100’s of thousands of residents. Oakland County – relies – on Macomb , for its stormwater strategy.
A number of animals eat fish, like otters, birds of prey, and humans. Unfortunately fish pick up chemical contaminates and pass them along to the predators.
This takes place right here, now 2015,
SouthEast Michigan, in Lake St. Clair
and its tributaries, the Clinton River. Some people choose to wear blinders, but problems exist, regarding clean pure water.
Click to enlarge the articles :
The Clinton River involves a LARGE part of Oakland County with its old crumbling Combined Sewer Systems.
Fish compete with CSO dumps into the Clinton River. Each major CSO stirs up sediment choking fish and creates a Delta in Lake St.Clair
A facility (RTB) Retention Treatment Basin –basically– just screens out feces and sprays bleach on the water.
The Red Run Drain = The GWK
George W. Kuhn = an RTB of 90 million/gal
We all know fish need oxygen.
It is dissolved in the water and the amounts of oxygen are easily compromised.
For 50 years, Oakland County has refused to FIX an outdated system of combined sewer systems and simply tried a band-aid approach with the 12TownsDrain aka RedRunDrain .
The building and operation of the GWK retention treatment basin result has not been all that spectacular, despite an intense media blitz. Sure the discharge meets ” guidelines” ….ha ha ha.
Flooding along the Clinton River and its tributaries is a major concern — and much of the blame falls squarely on Oakland County.
Water quality is also a function of the CSO’s discharged into the Red Run Drain. The GWK basin often can not handle the rainfall amounts.
Now the EPA wants to pledge $ 20 million towards the Clinton River. That is taxpayer money, your money, out of your pocket, remember ? I recall “another” $ 20 million via the USACE (Engineering Corps of the USA) back in 2011. Oh yeah , how much was the GWK basin…around $ 200 million.
I just love the Gag Order on everyone regarding our “Water and Sewage Rates” so people like Brian Baker are insulated from the storm hitting the fan in 2015.
Let us remember Pontiac is now ” the” new sewer processing site to feed the Clinton River. Pontiac needs revenue $$$ via sewage processing.
What are the financial resources for a group such as the CRWC – The Clinton River Watershed Council of SouthEast Michigan ?
They rely a lot on unpaid volunteers to provide grunt labor on various clean-up projects.
NonProfits need to file a Form 990 showing where those dollars go.
CLICK on images below to enlarge :
The Federal Government has been involved with the Red Run section of the Clinton River via the USA Corps of Engineers since the 1960s.
An article in The Voice, Thursday, February 26, 2015, by Paul Kampe described an EPA pledge of $ 20 million dollars to aid the Clinton River.
If you have concerns about the Red Run Drain, 12TownsDrain, Kuhn Retention Basin storm water — speak up NOW !!!
Click on picture to enlarge :
The EPA program focuses on 11 projects through the Clinton River watershed along the Clinton River, its tributaries and the mouth of Lake St. Clair.
The Clinton River (PAC) –Public Advisory Council will do projects involving streambank restoration, woody debris management, and native plants.
The GLWA and DWSD need to thoroughly and actively research what others cities are doing.
Is the Great Lakes State really on the cutting edge of Fresh Water Technology , or do others beat the pants off us ?
There is an amazing amount of rhetoric , noise and buzz about people “” supposedly “” too poor to pay their water bills around the MetroDetroit area. There is also a major lack of evidence , concerning extreme inordinate unsurmountable Monthly Water Bills.
People in and around Detroit , simply have not posted their water bills , online, within social media, on the internet, for others to view. I suspect it is because the water bills were neglected, de-prioritized, deemed un-important enough to pay In Full, for a fresh zero balance, each and every month.
It may be tough, unfair, inaccurate, to compare Detroit to other cities. …nag,nag,nag, whine, whine. Get over it, It Happens if you like it or not. There is some truth in the charts. Especially when similar numbers pop up repeatedly on various different comparative mechanisms. Maybe you really do waste a ton of water, every single day, all year long. If people really were truly outraged, incensed, furious, we would be seeing 100,000 scans, copies, smartphone pics, on InstaGram, Pinterest, Facebook, etc etc etc etc proving the injustice. If it is seriously bad, you’ve sought out assistance already, right ?
Clean, disinfected, purified, pressurized, drinkable water, distributed to residential kitchen faucets is a SERVICE that costs money. Yeah, the price went up a bit recently, perhaps in a deceitful manner, but it is not forcing people out of their Metro-Detroit homes.
People need to re-think priorities. You cannot drink a Tweet, swallow a gallon of Gasoline, quench your thirst with Comcast, or flush your toilet with Cigarettes. Drinkable Water comes first, everything else is secondary. Think about it all for a second. Let’s stop the bullshit , No one is wiping your debt.
This guy explains ( in high scientific detail ) why pipes burst in a highly similar manner all over the world. Scroll down to read about the molecules, the bonds, the physics involved , in bursting water pipes during the winter months
Water is an amazing substance . Most liquids do not expand before transition to solid.
Hackel appears to be following LBrooksP lead and the representatives that were picked, are very silent on the proposed rate increases for the suburbs.
Learn more about it all :
FEMA helped many people in Macomb and Oakland counties last year ( 2014 ).
I have little doubt Warren, Michigan and nearby cities will experience more flooding from communities at higher elevations with Combined Sewer Overflow issues.
Oakland County 12 Towns District sends its storm water to us – pure and simple. Water finds its own level, and at about 620 ft above sea level – everything begins to get wet in Warren.
An article on an NPR website details the chaotic start of GLWA for Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties. It is causing apprehension and mis-trust right out of the starting gates for 2015 in Michigan.
Warren is indeed unique concerning water issues in Metro Detroit. It has a Water Treatment plant, it has stormwater entering from OaklandCounty via The Red Run and it has The Interceptor aka OMID bisecting the city.
Warren needs to be connected to The Interceptor and this has already been preliminarily approved. Politics is getting in the way, hindering flood relief for residents.