Environmentalists Say Beltway Project Threatens Northern Virginia Creek | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

: News

Environmentalists Say Beltway Project Threatens Northern Virginia Creek

Play associated audio
The plastic fence around this pile of dirt in Fairfax County, Virginia has failed and can no longer stop the dirt from draining into a nearby nature area during heavy rains.
David Schultz
The plastic fence around this pile of dirt in Fairfax County, Virginia has failed and can no longer stop the dirt from draining into a nearby nature area during heavy rains.

The Accotink flows in Fairfax County, just a few hundred yards from the future site of toll lanes on the Capital Beltway.

Kris Unger with the Sierra Club says much of the dredged-up dirt from the Beltway construction project is draining into the creek. He points out a makeshift plastic fence, and the steady trickle of muddy water that's leaking through it.

"As you can see, it's already taking its own path through," he says. "The fence isn't serving any purpose. And you can see silty water going down into Accotink."

The cause of these increased silt deposits in the creek is clear, Unger says: thousands of trees were mowed down to make way for the Beltway project.

"When you open up an area, when you remove the trees and the vegetation that's been holding the dirt in place," Unger says, "That's when you start having these dramatic effects."

Unger is scheduled to meet with Virginia transportation officials on Thursday to discuss the issue.

David Schultz reports...

NPR

'Night At The Fiestas' Spins Stories Of Faith And Family

Kirstin Valdez Quade's debut book of short fiction is inspired by her family and its long history in the "romanticized" region of northern New Mexico.
NPR

Not Just Sugary-Sweet, Hard Cider Makes A Comeback

Cider is the fastest-growing alcoholic beverage in the United States. Much of that growth is driven by big industrial producers, but smaller cider-makers are looking for a larger bite of the apple.
NPR

Nigerian President Faces Tough Reelection Campaign

Nigerians head to the polls Saturday to vote for their new president. The incumbent Goodluck Jonathan faces former military leader, Muhammadu Buhari, who says he's tough on security and corruption.
NPR

App That Aims To Make Books 'Squeaky Clean' Draws Ire From Edited Writers

Clean Reader — an app designed to find, block and replace profanity in books — has drawn considerable criticism from authors. This week, makers of the app announced they would no longer sell e-books.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.