Archive for the Local Pollution Story Category

Rose Ave. Rehabilitation

Rose Ave. Rehabilitation
Save Maumee’s Work Site 2021 501 Rose Ave. New Haven, IN 46774 Rose Ave Specification Plan Implemented in 2020 thanks to Great Lakes Restoration Grant through the USDA Forest Service October 18, 2020 Completed planting over 3 days Added 550 trees (25% shrubs & 75% trees) 1,400 linear feet by 64 feet wide of invasive removal (>square feet) & large trash removal of historic rubbish This is a private property site, but we are inviting you to come help make it better with us on event days! DO NOT DRIVE OR PARK ON THE HILL Please leave only footprints and take only TRASH. Stay on the paths Do not move wood, stones, plants/trees, wildlife and please be respectful. IDEM update Sept 1 2020: water testing & regulatory correspondence  IDEM update 2020 December: site photos & maps Trier and Bullerman converging HUC12 Watershed Map CLICK HERE FOR ALL SAVE MAUMEE’S UPCOMING EVENTS   See the pictures from: 2020 October 3-Day Tree Planting of 550 trees at Rose Ave. 2020 Earth Day Trash Clean Up at Rose Ave Please click to fill out Please sign the LIABILITY WAIVER PDF CLICK HERE TO EMAIL IT! Our projects heart & soul is in ourRead more

Combined Sewer Overflows – college term paper

Combined Sewer Overflows   Written by Sean Musi V161    I have spent half of my life in Fort Wayne, Indiana and the number one issue that comes to mind involving the environment is the poor condition of our water ways. This is especially upsetting because the city seems to take some pride in the fact that three rivers meet in it and even have a large week-long festival named after it, Three Rivers.   ​My mind went straight to a presentation given by a local grassroots project while I was studying at my previous college in Fort Wayne. Abigail Frost, founder of Save Maumee Grassroots Movement, spoke about her current efforts as well as how these three bodies of water came to be as unpleasant as they are today.   ​The St. Joe River is where over 200,000 people get their drinking water. This meets the St. Mary’s and both then flow together to create the Maumee. The St. Mary’s, which floods frequently and is highly polluted, passes through much of northeast Indiana. These two rivers come together to form the Maumee, which contains high levels of mercury, PCB and E. coli.,fish consumption advisories, as well as the accumulation of sediment and garbage. The Maumee

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Rivers Causing Illness to Recreationists

Hello All, I spoke to Julie Horney today and she gave me a different perspective about our efforts.  Julie became ill with Hepatitis, Thrombocytopenia,  hepatomegaly (eventually causing Anemia) – probably due to E. coli – within 24 hours of her contact with our rivers.  There needs to be a face that represents the problems we face with our river conditions…enough to cause illness! Her contact with the water is causing her weakness and sickness months later, and still to this day ~ no medication to help, only living through the illness she contracted due to contact with our local waterways!  So who is is the responsible party for her illnesses? City? County? DNR? Julie wants postings at all entry points to waterways; as to the hazards of using the waterways for recreation.  I wanted to share her story with you.  ALL of us need to be aware of the dangers of our local waterways!  If you think that our rivers in Indiana are disgusting, your natural resources are being robbed from you.  Thank you for reading her story!   ~ Abby   Baby don’t fear the . . . cyanobacteria!    If the “wind, the summer, the rain” were present that

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Meetings Recap of LaFarga Copper LLC (Steel Dynamics Inc.)

On January 12, 2012, the Allen County Drainage board had their beginning talks about reconstructing the Bandelier Ditch #3.  Abby Frost-King and Celia Garza specifically requested from different contacts within the Surveyors office, to be informed of the day they would begin conversations. We were not called about this first meeting. They explained that this was only the introduction of the project and that there would be additional meetings. The Drainage Board meets the second and fourth Thursday of every month at 9:30am in the Council courtroom Suite 035 in the Garden level of Citizens Square. The next meeting will be January 26, 2012 at 9:30am. If they continue to speak and plan for this ditch improvement, it is imperative that we all attend to share our opinions…even though we have been informed that there will be a “public hearing” after the plans are in place and THEN the public who live in the area will be able to comment on their findings. Save Maumee had attended the last Allen County Drainage Board meeting of 2011.  We requested the review of the restructuring of Bandilier Ditch #3, since it seemed necessary to do this work before LaFarga Copper LLC (Steel

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2011 Tribute to our local Rivers

We wanted to commemorate our achievements for Save Maumee’s “Organization of the Year 2011” presented to us at Butler University by Hoosier Environmental Council. So, if you would like to see why we were chosen for the award, check out our video with local musicians Elephants in Mud. ALL pictures in the video were taken in 2011 ~ Click on the picture!

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"FortWayne.com" coverage of Save Maumee's Award

  The Lowdown: Save Maumee grassroots group named environmental “Organization of the Year” in Indiana Submitted by Jaclyn Goldsborough on Thu, 12/22/2011 – 12:06   Posted in http://fortwayne.com The Lowdown Fort Wayne is known for its three rivers — the St. Joesph River, St. Marys River and the Maumee River — but who is protecting them? The answer is Save Maumee. Save Maumee was honored in early December by the Hoosier Environmental Council as the “Organization of Year” for empowering the people of Fort Wayne to protect the extensive waterways by doing projects, events and legislation. Click here to see a photo gallery of Save Maumee initiatives. Founder of Save Maumee, Abigail King, started the grassroots organization in 2005 to raise awareness of the conditions of the three rivers and develop restoration projects to make sure the rivers are healthy. “I just started paying attention and reading about the rivers after we moved into a house near the river. The things I dug up in the river horrified me, and many people I talked to didn’t know what was wrong with the waterways. Many times with the government, it seems like one hand doesn’t know what the other is doing. I

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IDEM Public Comment Letter for Steel Dynamics Inc. new copper plant

September 19, 2011 This letter is to be included for the public comment period on SDI LaFarga, LLC’s air permit #003-30250-00384 We believe there is a compliance violation with Steel Dynamics’ operation at Superior Aluminum located on 14214 Edgerton rd. (326 IAC 6-4 Rule on Fugitive Dust).  We can provide video evidence to both the EPA and IDEM to prove the need for an investigation.  IDEM referred us to information about current and expected air pollution levels at http://www.in.gov/apps/idem/smog/ and directed us towards a map of the air quality monitors around the area. After digging for a time, I was unable to locate a map that showed anything but the monitors around nation. It is difficult to tell if the ones in our area are located in Allen County, IN.  Our area of concern is around Edgerton, Ryan, Dawkins, Bruick, Harper, Roussey, Bremer, Berthauld, Webster, Parent, Slusher Roads, and US 24.   In the 326 IAC 2-1.1-5 it reads. The commissioner shall not issue a registration, permit, modification approval, or operating permit revision: (1)   would allow a source to cause or contribute to a violation of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards; (2)   would allow a violation of a PSD

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Citizens' Questions that NEED to be Answered

On September 15th, 2011 IDEM held a public meeting to address the air permits being issued for Steel Dynamics Inc. 59 people were in attendance and spoke of fear of pollution from Superior Aluminum, and did not want to have air permits approved for the new LaFarga copper plant. We have included the questions (below are citizens’ questions) that were NOT answered during this 4 hour meeting and we are requesting they are answered for the health of the public OR deny SDI’s air permit request.  AIR Who will watchdog any monitors that are placed? How often will they be monitored? (heavy metals, particulate matter, ) How are we to be assured that SDI will conform to the Federal Clean Air Act?   If these regulations are not followed, what is the consequence to the business? What fines are associated with non-compliance? public hearing/ legal action / law suit applicable? If a fine were levied, where would the money go? Can we test the air now BEFORE this plant goes up and then AFTER the plant is in operation if air permit is granted? (benchmark) If there is something in existence of what is upwind and downwind to monitor the

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U.S. Army helps Save the Maumee!

July 16th 2011– United States National Guard helped Save the Maumee River! Lead by Staff Sergeant Grimm and Sergeant Michele Berkes-Adams along with a medic and 20 recruits removed large items in the Maumee River in Riverhaven, (a three mile stretch between Fort Wayne and New Haven). – The U.S. Army works on “green drills” several times a year and had chosen to help Save Maumee!  Items removed include a teddy bear, 10 tires and assorted car parts, steel drums, a sump pump, 2 children pools. Hats off to the men and women who keep us safe through cleaning up the large items that nobody else can remove without being put in harms way! Canoes were provided by Fort Wayne Outfitters/Bike Depot and Earth Adventures; two competitors working together to improve our rivers.   Here are two seperate stories from the Journal Gazette! http://www.journalgazette.net/article/20110717/LOCAL/307179893/1002/LOCAL Troops attack Maumee trash Published: July 17, 2011 3:00 a.m. Patrick Svitek | The Journal Gazette Fort Wayne– Ten tires, two kiddie pools, a sump pump, a microwave and a doll head were among items collected by Staff Sgt. David Grimm’s Indiana Army National Guard team Saturday afternoon in the Maumee River. As part of the National Guard’s nationwide

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Sneaky Industry & More Pollution for Indiana

http://www.in.gov/apps/lsa/session/billwatch/billinfo?year=2011&session=1&request=getBill&doctype=HB&docno=1112 It is important to note that Indiana HB 1112 was signed by the Present of the Senate after passing through the House of Representatives.  Little do you realize, this bill was created by Steel Dynamics Inc. (SDI) and presented to Rep. Win Moses, but he turned it down because it was not good for the people’s health in Indiana…it was good for large corporations.  Phyllis Pond, however sponsored this bill and it was supported by Bob Morris.  Indianapolis Star reported this bill will allow Steel Dynamics to use its industrial waste as land compost material. So how would SDI benefit from this bill?  This bill, basically means industrial waste can now be spread on land as an “amendment.” Amended soil is a material added to soil to improve plant growth and health. A conditioner or a combination of conditioners corrects the soil’s deficiencies in structure and-or nutrients to improve soil fertility. SO this means that the department will allow the use of industrial waste products in a land application operation or as ingredients in a soil amendment or soil substitute on the same basis as other materials under the rules concerning land application and marketing and distribution permits.” I

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What Goes Up, Must Come Down ~ Into Our Water

 Meeting 05/17/2011– Many local homeowners spoke out at the meeting because of their concern with the smoke (sometimes blue, sometimes yellow) that comes from Superior Aluminum.  Their concerns for their health and their families well-being were many, but Denny Luma (President of Superior Aluminum) says, “I can’t tell you what the yellow smoke is,” giving little comfort to attendees. Testimonials heard that night were heartbreaking. “Our entire area has a tremendously high rate of cancer…everyone on my block suffers from several types of cancer.” “These are our homes, please understand our concerns.  You come to work everyday for a few hours, but get to go home to clean air in your neighborhood.  We cannot escape it.” “If smoke is not meant to escape, why is it when I call the Hotline number the smoke stops coming out immediately?  If it is that easy to make it stop than why is it smoking to begin with?” The community has already suffered from previous problems in their neighborhoods from Superior Aluminum.  In April 2010, 10 families evacuated their homes due to a chlorine spill.  Article located here: “Chlorine escaped the building and 10 families had to leave their homes.”In order to offer

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Steel Dynamics Inc. MEETING for Building Copper Foundry in New Haven

On April 27, Steel Dynamics Inc. held an open meeting to discuss its plan for a new copper foundry to be built in New Haven, IN.  It began with a short presentation about the site, giving details of the furnace, what routes trucks would use and so on.  Afterwards, they opened the floor for questions.  Although only a few were informed of this meeting in advance, over 150 residents came to voice their concerns over the pollution this plant will likely produce. SDI, together with OMNI Source, has run Superior Aluminum since 1998, and has many of its neighbors worried.  In April of 2010, a leak of chlorine gas forced those nearby to evacuate their homes for several days while the haz-mat was cleaned up: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zKcjqH26DoM.  At the meeting, questions were asked about the day to day problems, like noxious odors, and blue smoke blowing for miles around the plant.  One man even had video footage of this, but the members of the board refused to acknowledge these claims.  Instead of attempting to answer the concerns, or giving detail how their new plant would be different then their old one, they pled ignorance of the environmental issues at hand, and

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6th Annual Save Maumee's EARTH DAY FUNNY VIDEO!

Well, we are considered a good natured bunch, with a sense of humor… See our attempts at getting some nationwide attention!  We gave a funny shout out to Ellen DeGeneres, John Stewart, Jimmy Kimmel, Steven Colbert & Oprah.  We figured any media attention is good attention, even if it is a little tainted!  We think that all the trash we pull out of our Three Rivers in Fort Wayne is ridiculous and wanted to share a little satire in our Earth Day efforts.  We have been accused of being “rough around the edges and a little crass,” so we did not want to disappoint!  Remember, we are a 100% unpaid volunteer group, so you get what you pay for!  Dirty rivers, however, are no laughing matter.  Let it be very clear though, we only want clean water, clean rivers and reduced pollution and we are willing to do something about it.  It is one thing that brings us all to a consensus.  Thank you for your continued support! Thank you to everyone who make our events a complete success….AGAIN! The first 30 seconds are specific to the celebrity, and the rest of the 2 minute video are basically the same.

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Save Maumee's 6th Annual Earth Day Celebration

~ Save Maumee’s 6th Annual Earth Day 2011 ~ SUNDAY April 17 ~ WE are here for the cause….CLEANER WATERWAYS AND AWARNESS ~ 11AM – 4PM ~ All Ages ~ Rain or Shine ~  Action & Education ~ Seed Planting & Large Scale Erosion Control Project ~ Free Fun Open-Non House…working on improving your rivers with only citizen sponsorship and 100% volunteers since 2005!  Looking for your back muscles! See where to find the Earth Day fun CLICK HERE: **Sign in and REGISTER FIRST and listen/read any information being presented about your rivers in Indiana – please sign the liability waiver, or you cannot participate.  (just keeping the lawyers happy :))Save Maumee Grassroots Organization is dedicated to raising awareness about the conditions of the 3 Rivers in Fort Wayne, Indiana while facilitating ecosystem restoration projects; ultimately repairing and improving the St. Joseph, St. Mary and Maumee Rivers. Revitalizing the St. Joe/Maumee Watershed will protect and restore the environment, while improving the economic, aesthetic and recreational value.  We are organizing hypothesis driven restoration projects, which place a high priority on monitoring, developing and restoring rivers with a positive environmental impact. Research into historical importance of our navigable waterways and current pollution

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Save Maumee's 3rd Annual ~ Canoe Clean-Up, Can YOU Clean-Up? Update

3rd Annual Update to Save Maumee’s Canoe Clean Up, Can YOU Clean-Up? ~Underbelly of the St. Mary’s River Uncovered~ What an interesting day THANK YOU to all Save Maumee’s 60 energetic river workers! Police, a meth amphetamine lab, batteries, full fire extinguisher & spray paint, Kids Dart, Think Smart yard sign, a sink, metal car parts, a carpeted wooden box with incubator like dials attached, 2 wallets complete with driver’s licenses, full size dead cat, Pepsi can from the 1970’s, a Cookie Monster hat, thousands of cans/bottles/Styrofoam and cigarette butts, and of course plenty of tampons and fresh water jellyfish to finish the day. We also installed 40 square feet of erosion control mats to keep soil where it belongs.   Many questions arose as to where all the fresh water jellyfish came from…a.k.a. condoms.  Local citizens flush them down the toilet, the combined sewer systems then flush them to the river with as little as 1/10th inch of rainfall.  They are not from extracurricular activities on the rivers! Remember, what you flush down your toilets and sinks DO NOT go away, they end up in our rivers.  To clarify questions asked about Combined Sewer Overflows please read the Save

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Save Maumee's Response to Attack on the Environment

This is the letter to the editor in response to Terry Smith from Columbia City’s piece. (below) Written May 11, 2010 —————————- Indiana is 94% reliant on coal-fired power.  Yes, energy independence from the burning of fossil fuels is a must.  If rolling black outs are a fear, consider putting a solar or wind powered system on your home and receive reimbursement for your investment on next years taxes and watch the savings add up over the lifetime of the house.  In In the 1970’s Germany had concerns about energy security concerns and began research and development. “A federal Electricity Feed Law (StrEG) was adopted in 1991 and became the most important instrument for the promotion of renewable energy in Germany during the 1990s. It obligated public utilities to purchase renewably-generated power from wind, solar, hydro, biomass and landfill gas sources, on a yearly fixed rate basis, based on utilities’ average revenue per kWh. Remuneration to wind producers was set at 90% of the average retail electricity rate; for other renewable power providers, compensation was set at 65-80%, depending on plant size, with smaller plants receiving the higher subsidy level. The StrEG effectively subsidized the operation of commercial wind installations

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Essex Spill in St. Mary's – March 2009

Just in case you missed it! Fort Wayne Essex Spill Early March 2009 – Very interesting viewpoints. I think that Essex, Ft. Wayne, IDEM, et.al. Need to re-evaluate a lot of items. The tank that leaked should have secondary containment, which it did (containment vault) but secondary containment should be large enough to handle the entire amount from the original tank. Then the viewpoint (state environmental officials said there is no risk to human health) seems a bit premature because (The crews wore protective hazardous-material suits and respirators to filter the air they breathe). The chemicals are still able to cause burns even in a diluted state (Phenol is corrosive and even when diluted can cause serious burns after prolonged contact)….and it sounds like the fish kill was due to ice? Toxic soup in St. Marys Chemicals spill from Essex Group; river ice masks extent of fish kill Dan Stockman The Journal Gazette A wire factory spilled hundreds of gallons of hazardous chemicals into the St. Marys River along the Rivergreenway and upstream from two popular parks, but state environmental officials said there is no risk to human health. The spill, which involved chemicals that can burn the skin even when

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GE PLANT SPILL IN Fort Wayne Rivers!

So “377,000 gallons of coolant was spilled [that]contained a corrosion inhibitor called 3D Trasar 3DT289, which contains up to 5 percent phosphoric acid and up to 5 percent sulfuric acid, both of which can be hazardous at higher concentrations.” It is important to note that after tests are taken up to several hours later, the damage had been done to the St. Mary’s. The “coolant” will pass along downstream and become diluted.  It is naive to think that “it should pose no danger to residents or the environment.” Phosphoric Acid – The phosphate may persist indefinitely in water. Is considered hazardous and burns skin….see for yourself. –  http://www.jtbaker.com/msds/englishhtml/p3973.htm Sulfuric Acid  is a musculoskeletal toxicant, respiratory toxicant, skin or sense organ toxicant www.scorecard.org/chemical-profiles/summary.tcl?edf_substance_id=7664-93-9#hazards No fines assessed?  What do you think? Published:February 26, 2010 3:00 a.m. GE plant coolant spills in river; no threat seen   Benjamin Lanka and Dan Stockman The Journal Gazette     More than 300,000 gallons of coolant water spilled into the St. Marys River from General Electric’s Taylor Street plant this week, but company and state officials said it should pose no danger to residents or the environment. GE employees discovered a water tower line break at

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