As Prez Donnie continues to use his Twitter fingers to make sure the nation and Mexico knows that he is still very interested in building his wall, many other “real” national emergencies like the Flint water crisis seem to be taking a back seat. Well ironically, Michigan environment officials are now claiming that the water no longer has high levels of lead in it.
Flint officials say that lead levels are now below the federal limit and are now at levels comparable to other cities with older pipes and similar size.
via The Associated Press:
The 90th percentile of lead concentrations in Flint was 12 parts per billion from July through December, below the “action level” of 15 ppb, according to a letter from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality to Flint’s mayor. It was 20 ppb in the prior six-month period.
Based on the sample of 368 residential sites, Flint’s lead levels are again comparable to other similarly sized U.S. cities with older infrastructure, state officials said.
“This is good news and the result of many partners on the local, county, state and federal levels working together to restore the water quality in the City of Flint,” the department’s director, Heidi Grether, said in a statement. “The Flint water system is one of the most monitored systems in the country for lead and copper, and that commitment will remain to ensure residents continue to have access to clean water.”
Of course many of the 100,000 Flint residents still don’t believe that the water is completely safe to drink especially because the city is beginning to replace their older pipes which could bring the lead levels back up.
“Especially with disruptions, main breaks — pieces of lead scale will be breaking off until these pipes are replaced,” resident Melissa Mays said via AP. “You cannot tell me the water is safe because you have not tested every home.”
Flint’s water has been in crisis ever since April 2014 after an apparent switching management but only gained much of it’s awareness last year thanks to social media. Rusting pipes having access to the city’s water supply were to blame for children being sickened by lead poisoning and even the deaths of 12 people.
AP also states that Flint residents will soon no longer see the state crediting their water bills due to the lower levels and will also seek to stop paying for Flint’s water altogether which the state has been doing since October 2015. Furthermore, state attorneys are also requesting that a judge allows the state to stop providing home filter inspections and water bottle deliveries.
Even though the judge is reportedly taking the request “as a suggestion,” if it is granted it could still but thousands of homeowners and their families in jeopardy seeing how any level of lead, whether high or low, is still unsafe to consume. Also as Mays had previously stated, officials only checked homes with lead pipes which still doesn’t account for all of it’s residents.
As of right now, the state is still agreeing to set aside $27 million for the pipe replacement plan. Republican Gov. Rick Snyder has since made a statement proud of the “remarkable improvement” but does say there is still a lot of work to be done.
“The remarkable improvement in water quality over the past year is a testament to all levels of government working together and the resilient people of Flint helping us help them through participation in the flushing programs,” he said. “There is still more work to do in Flint, and I remain committed to helping the residents recover and restore their city.”
Let’s chat below, do you think it’s a bit too soon for Flint officials to request that their court orders be repealed?
TSR STAFF: Debra Oh! @The_Ebony_Issue on IG