City Announces Clean Water Baltimore Initiative

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BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore prepares to tackle its water woes.

The city announces Clean Water Baltimore and, as Pat Warren reports, all city residents can expect to have a stake in it.

It’s no secret that the city infrastructure is outdated. There was a major water main break downtown in August.

“This year, a water main dating back to the 1890s burst at Light and Lombard Street,” said Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake.

And when the pipes burst, the traffic clogs.

Anyone with a nose knows there was a sewage problem with the Inner Harbor this June.

“The greaseballs that can only come from sewage pipes, condoms, tampon applicators flowing into the water. We knew for sure it was sewage,” said Tina Meyers of Blue Water Baltimore.

Storm drainage is another problem.

“Picks up and carries any trash and any pollutants to our streams, our harbor and the bay,” said Rawlings-Blake.

It makes Baltimore’s Inner Harbor Maryland’s dirtiest water.

“You have dog excrement and cat excrement and even rats and other things that gets washed into the storm system and then that flows into the harbor,” said Richard Eskin, Maryland Department of the Environment.

This week, Mayor Rawlings-Blake launched the Clean Water Baltimore initiative, a comprehensive effort to educate residents to every aspect of the city’s water system.

“We have to be better stewards all over the place. We have to learn, we have to teach our young people that if you throw something down in the alley in the curb, that’s going to end up in our bay,” she said.

The website is aimed at cleaning up and maintaining this essential natural resource.

According to Blue Water Baltimore, a group working with the city’s initiative, 20 Baltimore neighborhoods are already working toward cleaner water by implementing small-scale stormwater projects.

For more information about the program, click here.

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