Mega Spill on Nickajack Creek

On New Year’s Eve, the South Cobb Water Reclamation Facility experienced an unprecedented equipment failure. Over the subsequent nine days, an estimated 113 million gallons of raw sewage and stormwater spewed out of a manhole into Nickajack Creek, just a couple of yards from the Chattahoochee River. CRK responded immediately by collecting and testing water samples and providing access to reporters to ensure public awareness of the event. The deluge of untreated sewage entering the river via Nickajack Creek was evident as far as 70 miles downriver. E.coli bacteria levels measured more than five times higher than normal. Large [...]

By |October 2nd, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , |0 Comments

Does South Fulton Need More Water?

For years, the South Fulton Municipal Regional Water and Sewer Authority (Authority)—made up of Fairburn, Palmetto and Union City—planned to build a new water supply reservoir on a Chattahoochee tributary known as Bear Creek. The municipalities proposed a 440-acre reservoir that would be filled by pumping water—up to 32 million gallons daily—from the Chattahoochee River. Different reservoir concept plans failed on multiple occasions, most recently in 2016. The primary reason was that there was no need for the project. The state’s overly optimistic population projections—on which the Authority relied to justify the reservoir—did not pan out as officials initially [...]

By |September 27th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , |0 Comments

In-stream ‘Trash Traps’ collect litter pollution before it reaches the river

Proctor Creek, which begins in downtown Atlanta and flows west to the Chattahoochee River, has long suffered from stormwater carrying litter and illegal dumping of trash and tires. Two Litter Gitters, which serve to collect the trash pollution, are now located near Maddox Park and Boyd Elementary School off of Johnson Road. The Litter Gitter is designed and installed by Osprey Initiative, a company led by owner and founder Don Bates. During his 25-year career in environmental consulting, Bates found himself cleaning the same stream site repeatedly. So he built and tested the Litter Gitter with the hope that [...]

By |September 27th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |0 Comments

Critter Corner: Snapping Turtles

“Did you just see that rock move? Wait, it’s not a rock, it is a turtle!” If you see a large rock-looking turtle on the bottom of the river or a stream, there’s a good chance that it’s a snapping turtle. Characterized by their massive size and jagged shell, they're easily mistaken for giant river stones. Although typically docile in water, snapping turtles will strike if provoked. The powerful jaw of the reptilian snapper can slam shut with a force of more than 1,000 pounds. For your own safety, keep your distance if you see one in a creek [...]

By |September 20th, 2019|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

Curbside planters aim to combat stormwater runoff

In spring 2019, several new in-ground planters were installed along a few of Atlanta’s bustling streets, but these aren't just any old planters meant to showcase your favorite blooms; rather, these are thoughtfully designed “stormwater planters” that will reduce flooding and other impacts from urban runoff. The four planters were installed on either end of Atlanta—two are located in West View and two in Inman Park. Each directs stormwater off the streets and into structures filled with rocks, engineered soils, trees and other native vegetation where it can slowly infiltrate back into the ground instead of sending polluted stormwater [...]

By |September 19th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , , , |0 Comments

CASSI Tracks Pollution like Never Before

Since starting Neighborhood Water Watch (NWW) in 2010, CRK has detected more than 90 sewer spills, effectively stopping millions of gallons of raw sewage from reaching the Chattahoochee River. While NWW has achieved an unparalleled record of success, some spills go undetected as many streams are difficult for volunteers to access and samples may not be collected at the same time that a spill is ongoing. With this problem in mind, CRK has been working to develop an economical solution since 2015. By combining technology and lessons learned from three related initiatives, the Chattahoochee Aquatic Sensor System Integrated (CASSI) [...]

By |September 12th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , , , , |0 Comments