Monday, May 12, 2014

Share Your Photos of Picking Up After Your Dog!

Every time it rains, pet waste that is not picked up is washed into storm drains and directly into the James River without being treated. Dog waste is a source of e. coli, giardia, salmonella, roundworms and hookworms. These pollutants are harmful to humans, the James River and the Chesapeake Bay.

Pick up dog waste, whether it’s in your yard or at the park or on the sidewalks. Protect the James River and Pick Up the Poop – Don’t Pollute.

Send photographs of you and your dog to utilitybuddy at with the sign I Pick Up After [Dog’s Name] and we’ll share them on our Twitter and Facebook pages.

Gay picks up after Lexy!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Rain Barrel Winners

The winning barrels for the "Build a Barrel. Save the Bay" decorating contest are:

Best Environmental - Swansboro Elementary (left)
Most Outrageous - E.H.S. Greene Elementary (middle)
Most Creative - Bellevue Elementary (right)

The winners were announced Earth Day, April 26 at the 17th Street Farmers' Market. Each of the winning classes will receive an ice cream social.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Lynchburg Train Derailment Did Not Impact City's Water Supply

Information Concerning City's Water Supply following train derailment

The city is continuing to provide safe drinking water from the James River.
We have also taken precautionary measures to ensure that our citizens remains safe.
Following the train derailment in Lynchburg, VA, oil absorption booms were placed at the opening of the Kanawha Canal and other locations (a total of five ) to protect the city's water supply.  Water testing thus far has not yielded any residual oil and we will continue to test our water supply on a daily basis.

As an added measure, we have also filled the Kanawha Canal up from the James River in the unlikely event that we may need to isolate the canal and draw water from an alternative source.

The City is confident that the measures that have been employed will ensure that our water supply remains safe.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Oil Spill FAQs

What happened?

CSX train cars carrying crude oil derailed in Lynchburg Virginia, dumping its contents into the James River, where it caught on fire.  DPU received this information at approximately 2:44 p.m. on April 30, 2014. Lynchburg is two hours west of Richmond.

Does this impact city of Richmond drinking water since Richmond gets its water from the James River?

Currently there has been no impact to Richmond’s drinking water source. There is no evidence that any residual oil has made its way to Richmond. However as a precautionary measure, oil absorption booms have been placed at the opening of the Kanawha Canal and other locations to catch any residual oil that might reach it.

Is Richmond testing the water to ensure it is safe?

Yes. To date (May 1, 2014) our testing has not yielded any residual oil. Richmond routinely tests the water multiple times throughout each day.

Is Richmond’s drinking water safe?

Absolutely. The city continues to pull its water supply from the James River. The water is safe to drink and we will ensure that it stays that way.

What is the city’s plan if oil contamination makes its way to Richmond?
As a precautionary measure, we have filled the Kanawha Canal up from the James River prior to any oil arriving. While there is no evidence of an oil sheen, in the very unlikely event there is, we can isolate the canal and pull water from it as our water source.

What other agencies is the city in communication with?

The city of Richmond is in touch with our counterparts in the surrounding counties, as well as the Richmond Health District, Office of Emergency Management, and the Department of Environmental Quality. We continue to monitor the situation as it unfolds.