Stormwater management | St. Louis Public Radio

Stormwater management

Gas extraction wells on the Bridgeton Landfill in summer 2016.
File Photo |Eli Chen | St. Louis Public Radio

Residents and environmental activists expressed concerns at a public hearing Wednesday night that the state's pending stormwater permit for the Bridgeton Landfill does not require monitoring for radioactive waste. 

The Bridgeton Landfill sits above an underground smoldering fire, located about 600 feet from the World War II-era radioactive waste that's under the West Lake Landfill Superfund site. Concerns about radioactive contamination in stormwater rose over the summer, when the Missouri Department of Natural Resources released a report showing levels of alpha particles in runoff at Bridgeton Landfill that exceeded drinking water standards after heavy rains in late April. Alpha particles are a type of radiation that does not pierce the skin and must be ingested to damage human health.

Workers for the Metropolitan Sewer District begin to demolish a house on Greer Avenue as a part of program to turn vacant properties into green spaces. (March 22, 2017)
Eli Chen | St. Louis Public Radio

The Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District has started demolishing abandoned buildings to kick off a $13.5 million project to build green spaces in the city.

The Urban Greening Program is a part of MSD’s $100 million initiative to divert rainwater from entering the city’s sewers and contaminating local waterways. It’s also a key portion of a settlement agreement in 2012 with the Missouri Coalition for the Environment and the Environmental Protection Agency that requires the sewer district to spend $4.7 billion over the next two decades on improvements to sewer systems in St. Louis and St. Louis County, a larger effort called Project Clear.

Provided by Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

Engineering researchers at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville are helping the Illinois Department of Transportation develop strategies for managing stormwater runoff on highways.

Highways and roads interrupt the natural flow of water during rains and especially heavy precipitation could cause much of the runoff to overload sewers. Runoff also can taint the water quality of the rivers and streams that it enters.

Commentary: MSD and sustainable infrastructure

Feb 8, 2012

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 8, 2012 - Sometimes, when it rains, it pours. In St. Louis, when it pours, it pollutes. The reason: our mostly 19th-century systems for managing wastewater and stormwater lack the capacity to process the huge amounts of water that enter these systems during storm events. As a consequence, the excess - and untreated -- waste and storm waters are diverted from the system into urban streams and rivers or back up onto streets and into houses and commercial buildings.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: October 10, 2008 - As far as Brian Nieves knows, no governmental body in Missouri has ever conducted an official business session in any language other than English. He wants to keep it that way.