REPORT: Officials knew about Flint poison risk

Internal company emails for one of the largest utility companies in the world reveal that senior executives were aware of the possibility that lead from the city’s pipes could be leaching into drinking water. That’s according to a recent article in The Guardian, written by Emily Holden, Ron Fonger, and Jessica Glenza.

Citizens of Flint, Michigan, noticed problems with their water soon after the city’s water supply was switched from the Detroit water system to the Flint River in April 2014.

The Guardian reports that email exchanges between utility company executives and city contractors in February 2015 acknowledged safety problems and stated that the water supply should be changed to protect the residents of Flint.

Residents of Flint were not made aware of the wide-spread problem with the water supply until September, 2015.

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5 thoughts on “REPORT: Officials knew about Flint poison risk”

  1. In the US, we have layers of regulations for Environmental compliance (local, state, federal), in addition there are Env groups like the Sierra Club, such as; Save the…(water, lake, bay, river, etc.). Did they all fail?

    Not sure how the media reported this issue, but it is clearly a case of mismanagement by political leaders beginning with whoever is in charge of local drinking water. They should be charged with polluting the cities water supply, the same as a factory would be punished for dumping acid in the river (a source of drinking water.), as the results were the same.

    What they have now is a complicated mess of intertwined fiscal and environmental responsibilities, that will most likely be litigated for years. Lastly a warning which has been largely ignored by Americans.

    Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, it is force; like fire, a troublesome servant and a fearful master. — Washington, George

    1. The people in charge of Flynt’s water supply were the city’s Democrats. No Republican has held office in Flynt since WW2. They own the decision to start tapping the Detroit River. They were supposed to monitor water quality and they did: when they found out the results they started drinking bottled water at Flynt City Hall because they knew the tap water was toxic.
      The Liberal media showed no interest in journalism. When the disaster became public they immediately blamed the Republican governor. Typical Liberalism.

      1. Try as I might, I cannot find anything in this story that would remotely justify the above screed. According to this story, the only mention of any city official being told of possible water issues involved a report provided to city officials that “did not disclose the possibility for lead contamination, focusing instead on how corrosion could be causing water discoloration”. One Flint activist was quoted as saying that Veolia officials (the author of the report) characterized the situation as “everything is fine”. The interim water report stated that the water was “safe – in compliance with federal standards”.
        Recall that at the time of the switch to Flint River water, the city was under the control of Darnell Earley, one of a string of several emergency managers. I have no idea of Earley’s politics. All I know is that he was appointed by Governor Rick Snyder, a Republican. According to what I read, when alarms were raised about the use of the Flint River water, Earley and his successor resisted going back to using Detroit water because of the cost.
        This is not to say that there weren’t other people involved who could have done more to either stop or at least mitigate what happened. Local water officials failed to require corrosion controls be added to the water. Health officials continued to say that the water was safe when it wasn’t. State officials ignored the first warnings. Were all of these people liberals?
        So far, 15 people have been charged with crimes associated with this crisis. Seven pleaded guilty, and the charges were dropped against the other eight (with the pledge by the state AG to continue investigations). Were all of these people liberals too?
        It’s clear that this was not some liberal-caused snafu. The decision to switch to Flint River water and the decision to keep using Flint River water for as long as they did were made for cost reasons by people appointed by a Republican.
        Here is a quote from Governor Rick Snyder from his Congressional testimony: “This was a failure of government at all levels. Local, state and federal officials — we all failed the families of Flint.”
        So how are liberals solely responsible for this situation?

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