Freshwater Future Weekly News: June 16, 2023

Freshwater Future Weekly News: June 16, 2023

Your Help is Needed to Improve the Ohio and Illinois Water System Funding Process!

Drinking Water State Revolving Funds are one of the primary sources for funding local water system and infrastructure projects. For example, a community can apply to the drinking water fund to receive a long-term loan or grant funding to replace lead pipes to keep drinking water safe and affordable. However, improvements are needed in both the Ohio and Illinois process to ensure the money reaches the communities that need it the most. Right now, Illinois has its annual plan up for public comment until June 21st, and Ohio’s public comment goes until June 28th. Please take action today; it is an important step toward helping people have access to clean and affordable water. Stay tuned for more actions as your Great Lakes state’s drinking water fund program goes up for public comment.

Victory! Minnesota Mining Operation’s Wetlands Permit Revoked

Last week, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers revoked a wetlands permit for a proposed copper and nickel mine in northeast Minnesota because it was not in compliance with the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa’s water quality standards. The mining company can challenge the decision or submit an application for a new permit in order for the project to proceed. The Band successfully sued to have its Clean Water Act standards applied to the company’s permit in 2019. This is the first time the Army Corps has revoked this type of permit based on a tribe’s water quality standards. This decision will protect the water quality of the Band’s downstream waters and other communities downstream. Congratulations to the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa (a 2022 Freshwater Hero) and one of their partners, WaterLegacy (a Freshwater Future grant recipient) for this victory to protect water quality from mining waste. 

EPA Chicago Public Hearing: Federal Coal Ash Rule

Join frontline communities and the inspiring advocates at Just Transition Northwest Indiana at the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) public hearing on the new Federal Coal Ash Rules. They are mobilizing for a large turnout to urge the EPA to include all toxic coal ash sites in the new rule. The meeting will take place in Chicago on June 28th with a mixer hosted by Just Transition Northwest Indiana and EarthJustice to follow. Susan Thomas, Director of Legislation & Policy at JTNWI, said of this moment: “We’re at an incredible juncture in the health of Lake Michigan and the Great Lakes as the EPA is now revising the Federal Coal Ash Rule ”. Find out more details and register here! 

Great Coffee Starts With Clean Water – Buy a Lead Water Testing Kit for $40 and Get a Free Bag of Coffee from Superior Coffee Roasting Co.

Delicious coffee starts with clean water. Superior Coffee Roasting Co. in collaboration with Freshwater Future and the Flint Community Lab are offering a lead water testing kit for $40 with the added bonus of receiving a complimentary 12oz. bag of coffee. If you’ve ever considered having your home’s tap water tested for lead, now is the perfect opportunity to take action!   You can purchase the kit through Superior Coffee Roasting Co.  The kit includes testing supplies, instructions, and a box with free return shipping to the Flint Community Lab where your water sample will be tested for lead. After analysis you will receive a report from the Flint Community Lab. Take advantage of this great deal to indulge in the pleasure of a great cup of coffee from Superior Coffee Roasting Co.and gain information about lead in your drinking water.

To purchase a kit, click HERE now!