Tuesday, August 25, 2015

NY Times looks at Waukesha's water diversion plan

A big picture, national story. And it contains the first comment of note I've seen from another Great Lakes Governor:
In a wetter era, the city’s plan to build a $200 million pipeline to tap into Lake Michigan might have fallen on more sympathetic ears. But it faces a daunting obstacle now: historic drought in the West, which has made officials in the Midwest more protective than ever of their increasingly valuable resource.
“Obviously I have concerns about the usage of the Great Lakes in any capacity,” Gov. Rick Snyder of Michigan said in an interview, adding that he was closely watching the Wisconsin city’s request and had yet to decide how he would vote. 
A single governor can veto a diversion of water. “To some degree it’s like, where do you draw the line?” Mr. Snyder said. “It shouldn’t be done just as an ad hoc thing or a political thing. It should be based on sound science and good economics and what’s best for the long term. 
There is also discussion in the story of one problematic piece of the plan by Waukesha - - sending send some of the diverted water outside of its boundaries to neighboring communities which have not demonstrated a need for it - - a point raised on this blog since 2010. 

I'm glad I'd been blogging heavily about Wisconsin and Great Lakes water lately. Here's one post from yesterday with several items for context.


JoAnn said...

Thank you James for all of your hard work reporting all of these important matters and staying on them.

Angie E. Van Scyoc said...

We talked to the City of Waukesha about our grave concerns about the Town of Waukesha being included in the water service area over the span of over two years.

I was Chairman of the Town during that time and know the dynamic first hand.

We wanted control over development and annexation, they flatly refused each time we pressed the issue.

One of our concerns was that the expanded service area would negatively impact their application, especially if it allowed unchecked expansion of city boundaries.

Our concerns fell on deaf ears.

After my tenure political scare tactics delivered the Town fully in the service area.

Now the expanded service area is one of the more contentious issues even drawing national attention at this stage of review.

Too bad that they chose the path they did, I believe problems for them are just beginning.

In my opinion they want it all and may very well end up with nothing.

Anonymous said...

Thank you James, for your continued coverage of this very important issue.

If Waukesha's local politicians and pro-diversion pundits thought the DNR hearings were brutal, they've seen nothing yet.

This is a test of the Compact. There has been so many questions raised relative to the content and intent of the request itself.

I perceive that Governor Synder's comments are meant to signal the WDNR - it's not approveable.

James Rowen said...

Thanks for these comments.