In a huge victory for both Richmond residents and the San Francisco Bay, the City of Richmond announced today bold measures to clean up its outdated sewage system. The effort is the result of months of negotiations brought on after Baykeeper and Richmond-based West County Toxics Coalition sued the City for spilling hundreds of thousands of gallons of raw sewage every year.
In a blistering decision issued late yesterday, the U.S. District Court in Sacramento ordered the halting of all dredging at the Port of Stockton, and characterized the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ decision to issue the dredging permit as “arbitrary and capricious.”
Finding that EPA’s regulation exempting ballast water discharges from the Clean Water Act is “plainly contrary to the congressional intent,” a federal court ordered the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Monday to come up with new regulations within the next two years. The order follows the court’s finding last year that EPA had illegally exempted ships’ ballast water discharges from Clean Water Act permit requirements.
Baykeeper made good on its promise to sue the City of Richmond if officials failed to address problems causing massive sewage spills. After five months of negotiations, Baykeeper and co-plaintiff West County Toxics Coalition (WCTC) served a lawsuit today against the City of Richmond under the Clean Water Act for sewage spills from the City’s crumbling sewer collection and treatment systems. City partners Veolia Water North America Operating Services, West County Wastewater District, and the West County Agency were named in the lawsuit as well.