Thomas et al. In 1995, the Monongahela River Valley’s air was among the most polluted in the United States. Earthjustice attorney Abigail Dillen, representing the Environmental Integrity Project and Citizens Coal Council, successfully fended off a legal challenge from plant owner Allegheny Energy, which sought allowance for its facility to continue polluting the river. The first phase of the legal proceedings involves only the sulfate and total dissolved solids limits. About 30 miles south of Pittsburgh, Donora was founded by industrialists who saw the location as ideal for metal mills—close to railroads and the barge traffic of the Monongahela River. The impairments were documented during biological surveys of the aquatic life present in the watershed (1998 and 2002). Although the Monongahela River was nearly dead in the 1960s it has improved to the point of supporting over 70 species of fish, including a much-improved sauger and smallmouth bass fishery. Chemicals Lurking in Toys and Costumes are Harmful to Children. The state’s top violator, according to the report, is SCI Graterford STP, a correctional facility in Montgomery County north of Philadelphia. She has also reported for the Beckley Register-Herald in West Virginia and 100 Days in Appalachia. ... Over the last 40 years the Cheat has faced significant pollution from mine runoff and blowouts. Counties Get $6M to Help Reduce Pollution to the Chesapeake Bay. Watershed pollution in Appalachia, much of which has been caused by coal mining, is an ongoing environmental hazard that mimics the threat steel once posed to big cities on the Ohio. There it joins with the Alleghany River to eventually form the Ohio River. Brief history of the pollution of the Monongahela River and how it is still being polluted today despite the regulations put in place. Pennsylvania is on the cusp of a solar energy boom. “We’re here overlooking the Mon River for one simple reason,” she said, gesturing to the water behind her, swelling with falling rain. Since 2008, the river has The Cheat River is fed by the five forks of the Cheat (Blackwater River, Shavers, Dry, Glady, and Laurel Forks). River in WV, PA. Wikipedia. “We’ve found that industrial facilities dumped excessive pollution into Pennsylvania waterways 633 times,” she explained. Adelina is currently reporting for 90.5 WESA in Pittsburgh. WARNING DETECTION SYSTEM ON THE ALLEGHENY AND MONONGAHELA RIVERS IN PENNSYLVANIA Jerry G. Schulte Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission Cincinnati, Ohio INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND The Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission (ORSANCO) is an interstate water pollution control agency created in 1948 to monitor and abate water pollution in the Ohio River Basin. PennEnvironment lists the top 10 industrial polluters to Pennsylvania’s rivers. The 1948 Donora smog killed 20 people and caused respiratory problems for 7,000 of the 14,000 people living in Donora, Pennsylvania, a mill town on the Monongahela River 24 miles (39 km) southeast of Pittsburgh. The main stem of the Monongahela River has been acidic, until very recently, throughout its length. The Mon River was nearly dead of life from steel mill and other pollution in the 1960s. Sixty years ago, the nation's worst air pollution disaster occurred in the Monongahela River valley town of Donora. It threatens aquatic life, endangers people taking part in river recreation and — perhaps most critically — creates water unfit for human consumption. According to the report, industrial facilities across the country exceeded federal water pollution levels 8,100 times between January 2016 and September 2017. An abandoned mine discharge on the Monongahela River caused a bright orange plume of pollution but didn’t impact public water supplies. The Monongahela River ( mə-NONG-gə-HEE-lə, -HAY-lə) — often referred to locally as the Mon — is a 130-mile-long (210 km) river on the Allegheny Plateau in north-central West Virginia and southwestern Pennsylvania, which flows from south to north. In the recent past, the Monongahela River was wrecked by industrial waste and pollution. HUC ... industrial and municipal pollution, , and land usedeep well gas development are currently some of the principal water quality concerns in the watershed. Another 10 instances went over by more than 500 percent, exposing the Mon River to chemicals including zinc, aluminum and nitrate. This story comes from our partner, 90.5 WESA. Eastman Chemical’s national headquarters has not responded to a request for comment. https://bit.ly/3nE9bFi U.S. Steel says soot pollution levels declined significantly when traffic … Not just at the Point, where the dark, silty Mon -- lifeblood to heavy industry -- merges with the clearer Allegheny. The Cheat River is a 78.3-mile-long (126.0 km) tributary of the Monongahela River in eastern West Virginia and southwestern Pennsylvania in the United States.Via the Ohio River, the Cheat and Monongahela are part of the Mississippi River watershed.Owing to the ruggedness of the surrounding Allegheny Mountains, the Cheat remains largely remote with few settlements or developments along … Complaints obtained from the health department reveal descriptions of an industrial stench wafting over the old milltowns of the Monongahela River valley — “A STRONG ODOR … Ohio River-Wikipedia . The Monongahela River (/ m ə ˌ n ɒ ŋ ɡ ə ˈ h iː l ə / mə-NONG-gə-HEE-lə, /-ˈ h eɪ-/-⁠ HAY-) —often referred to locally as the Mon (/ m ɒ n /)—is a 130-mile-long (210 km) river on the Allegheny Plateau in north-central West Virginia and southwestern Pennsylvania. When it was over, the local funeral home ran out of caskets. But many people in nearby communities are still feeling the effects — and worrying about their health. Waters from the Cheat support life all along the 162 miles the water travels to the Monongahela River. Dissolved-solids concentrations have decreased by 2 percent in the Allegheny River and by 6 percent in the Monongahela River. But four years later, one environmental group is worried that industrial pollution threatens to make the Mon–and other Pennsylvania rivers–impaired again. Reductions in dissolved solids in the Monongahela River have virtually eliminated the exceedences of the SMCL of 500 mg/L (fig. The river flows northward, towards Pittsburgh for a total of 128.7 miles. The Monongahela River Watershed Assessment is a two phase study process that will result in a Watershed Plan for the Monongahela basin. PITTSBURGH – A wrongful termination suit from a man who claims he was fired from a water and sewer authority when he refused to dump raw sewage into the Monongahela River is the burden of the West Elizabeth Sanitary Authority, according to Union Township. A workman's touch ignited the fire. Monongahela River Basin. Pollutant Reduction Plan Instructions(PDF) TMDL Plan Instructions(PDF) To assist MS4s with understanding their obligations regarding impaired waters, DEP has prepared an MS4 Requirements Table. In the spring of 2018, the municipal authority noticed its discharges into the Monongahela River violated its NPDES permit standards for certain chemicals, including ammonia-nitrogen. The three sisters bridges stand out in the city of bridges. Three rivers, the Allegheny, Monongahela and Ohio, cross through Pittsburgh’s metropolitan area. Adelina Lancianese is a 2017-18 Kroc Fellow at NPR and a 2017 graduate of Georgetown University. Örtlich ist er auch unter der Bezeichnung the Mon bekannt. Unfortunately, that’s not the case … and a lot of that is due to the industrial pollution that flows illegally into our rivers every year.”. Which one is more frozen? Monongahela River basin (PFEB 1972) and concomitant improvements in water quality. Eastman Chemical Resins, on the banks of the Mon and upstream from Pittsburgh, is identified as the second worst with 72 exceedances over its federal permit limit in less than two years. On the shores of the Mon River in the South Side on Tuesday, representatives from environmental advocacy group PennEnvironment gathered with Allegheny County Councilwoman Anita Prizio and Pittsburgh City Councilwoman-Elect Erika Strassburger, who previously worked for the statewide group. Pittsburgh has an extremely long history of … After 40 years without effective pollution controls, a scrubbing system was recently installed at the Hatfield’s Ferry power plant in Masontown, Penn., limiting the amount of sulfur dioxide and other pollutants the plant pumps into the air. Having rebounded from the deadly effects of abandoned mine drainage and unchecked pollution, the Monongahela River carves out a 7,340 square-mile watershed containing woodlands, rolling farmland, active and reclaimed coal mines, and towns rich in the history of the Industrial Revolution. On 10 of those occasions, they poured more than 500 percent of their permitted limits for zinc, aluminum, nitrites, styrene, and xylene into the Monongahela River. 1 99 1, Argent et al. The Monongahela River basin has been severely polluted by drainage from coal mining activity. Der Monongahela River ([məˌnɑŋ.gəˈheɪ.lə]) ist ein 206 km langer Fluss auf dem Allegheny-Plateau im Norden West Virginias und Westen Pennsylvanias im Osten der Vereinigten Staaten. The Fight for Climate Action Continues as the U.S. Withdraws from Paris Agreement, Statement from Earthjustice on Hurricane Delta, Fighting the Good Fight to Protect the Great Lakes, Earthjustice Felicita A Joe Biden Y Kamala Harris En Su Ceremonia de Juramentación, Earthjustice Congratulates Joe Biden and Kamala Harris As Our Country Enters a New Administration. The decision lays the foundation for requiring a wastewater scrubber system and limiting water pollution from the power plant. (412) 697-2933, A new report reveals that industrial facilities in Pennsylvania are among the top polluters of United States rivers, including a chemical company just 16 miles outside of Pittsburgh. It is 128 miles long with a drainage basin of 7,340 square miles. “Approximately 40 percent of all major industrial facilities–more than 1,100 in total–reported exceeding their pollution limits at least once,” the report reads. EPA data suggest that the prison exposed the Wilson River to fecal matter, ammonia and other pollutants 80 times in less than two years. By holding polluters such as Allegheny Energy accountable, Earthjustice is requiring energy companies to internalize their costs of operation, rather than passing those costs on to the public in the form of toxic pollution. The event is commemorated by the Donora Smog Museum. “Companies across the country are regularly exceeding their allowable pollution limits. Monongahela River Initial Watershed Assessment Page iii List of Figures Figure 1. In 1994 & 1995 there were two massive mine blowouts that placed the Cheat River on the list of the top 10 most endangered rivers nationwide. Of over 500 industrial facilities studied nationwide, only six facilities surpassed Eastman Chemical and SCI Graterford–three facilities in Arkansas and one each in California, Colorado and Ohio. PennEnvironment notes in the report that the group is concerned about the Trump Administration’s proposed cuts to the EPA, which could cripple an already inefficient clean water enforcement system. Allegheny Energy is challenging the limits in an effort to avoid installation of pollution controls that would eliminate wastewater discharges of mercury, arsenic, selenium, and … The environmental advocacy group, Penn Environment, is raising a red flag. PennEnvironment prepared their findings based on compliance data from the Environmental Protection Agency. Text JUSTICE to 43428 to receive Earthjustice text message updates. An abandoned mine discharge on the Monongahela River caused a bright orange plume of pollution but didn’t impact public water supplies. Eastman Chemical Resins, Inc., located along the Monongahela River in Allegheny County, upriver from Pittsburgh, exceeded its permitted pollution limits on 72 occasions. Read More: Monongahela River The group’s regional director, Ashleigh Deemer, said Pennsylvania companies top the list. Massive pollution has characterized the river. The Mon River was classified by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection as impaired, or too contaminated to drink, in 2002. 1 997). 10 of those occasions, they poured more than 500% of their permitted limits for zinc, aluminum, nitrites, styrene, and xylene into the Monongahela . Source: PennEnvironment. The Ohio River is a lot cleaner than it used to be. “We should not be fearful of going in the water and drinking the water,” Strassburger said. “That is the second highest number of exceedances in the country, second only to Texas.”. EPA Must Act Now. Rather, they are two essential elements that together foster healthy communities. The river caught fire in 1968 due to contamination. Two county district attorneys have referred their concerns over pollution to the Monongahela River to the state Attorney General’s Office for further investigation. The first phase, an Initial Watershed Assessment (IWA) was completed in February 2012. The main stem of the Monongahela River has been acidic, until very recently, throughout its length. The Monongahela River originates in north-central West Virginia and flows north through south-western Pennsylvania to Pittsburgh where it meets the Allegheny River to form the Ohio River. “Although the polluters mentioned in the PennEnvironment report may not be literally in our backyard, they are upstream and should be held accountable,” said Prizio. Stay informed on how we hold accountable those who break our environmental laws. UNIONTOWN – The district attorneys for Fayette and Washington counties announced Thursday afternoon that the Belle Vernon Municipal Authority and a local landfill have 90 days to work out a However, the water used to be known as highly polluted and almost killed off everything in it. Natural gas extraction, irresponsible development, and industrial waste are all contributing to serious problems in rivers like the Monongahela, Ohio, and Allegheny. Excessive siltation has been identified as the cause of benthic habitat impairment. If Allegheny is ordered to comply, the company will need to install pollution controls that eliminate the discharge of heavy metals as well. His environmental activism stems from an affinity for nature and the deep ecology philosophy espoused by the Norwegian philosopher, Arne Naess. Over the past decade, in terms of diversity, the Mon River became home to many fish qualified as pollution intolerant, including the red horse sucker and some minnows, the state Fish and Boat Commission has said. The trend toward improvement began in the 1970’s and has, for the most part, continued until today. See also the MS4 Requirements Table Instructions(PDF) for understanding and using the Table and for methods to provide comments. It is truly hard to say. Read More: Monongahela River During her fellowship, Adelina has produced for NPR's Weekend Edition and alongside NPR's investigative unit. That status remained until 2014, when the DEP declared that the river’s sulfate levels had dropped to acceptable levels. Earthjustice and its clients are defending protective limits for sulfate and total dissolved solids in the discharge permit for Hatfield’s Ferry and are challenging the failure to impose limits on metals such as arsenic and selenium. “State and federal officials must tighten enforcement of the Clean Water Act. Levels of toxic chemicals in our waters are at times so high that our rivers are too dangerous to swim in, and our waters so contaminated that people cannot drink from them. David Lawlor was a writer in the Development department. “Climate action plans from across the world collectively send the message that fossil fuels are no longer blue chip investments.”, EPA Administrator Visits California's Central Valley, Until the Earth Thrives, We Will Never Rest, Court Denies Permit to Mine That Would Damage Tribe’s Namesake River, You’ve Probably Never Heard of This DOJ Division, but It’s Key to Rebuilding Our Environmental Policy, Government Funding Bill Will Pave the Way for More Ambitious Environmental Agenda. The city’s dark past has been described as a cautionary tale for cities lacking environmental control. The law makes change. Highest number of exceedances in the country exceeded federal water pollution levels 8,100 times between January 2016 and September.! Cross through Pittsburgh ’ s sulfate levels had dropped to acceptable levels Development Department effects — worrying. 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