Maryland Governor Wades Into Septic Tank Battle | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Maryland Governor Wades Into Septic Tank Battle

Play associated audio
Gov. O'Malley in Lake Bonnie, receiving reports on its water quality from members of the State's Department of the Environment.
Matt Bush
Gov. O'Malley in Lake Bonnie, receiving reports on its water quality from members of the State's Department of the Environment.

The town of Goldsboro is near Maryland's border with Delaware, and many of its homes and buildings have septic tanks. Just outside of town, tucked behind the trees, is Lake Bonnie. Fifteen years ago, it was closed to swimmers because of pollution, much of which comes from septic tanks in Goldsboro.

Swimming is still banned today, but that did not stop O'Malley (D) from wading into the lake with members of the state's Department of the Environment as they tested its water quality.

O'Malley is pushing a bill that would ban septic tanks at all new large developments in the state, saying that will slow pollution even as population in Maryland continues to grow.

"We can't assume that Mother Nature is always capable of healing herself, if we load onto her so much more nitrogen load than any natural system can absorb itself," he says.

Opponents feel the plan will lead to a building moratorium, particularly on the Eastern Shore, where septic tanks are common and new housing developments pop up regularly.

O'Malley counters by saying the state's total nitrogen load will increase 36 percent over the next 25 years, at a time when federal regulators have said the state must reduce nitrogen in its environment by 21 percent by 2020.

WAMU 88.5

Art Beat With Lauren Landau, July 22

This weekend you can see two classic operas about sex, jealousy and drama or sit down for a children’s theater performance that takes a lighter look at love.

WAMU 88.5

Two Chicken Megafarms Proposed In Delaware

Delaware is already a big state for the poultry industry, but proposals for two new megafarms could take things to the next level.

NPR

U.S. Appeals Courts Issue Conflicting Decisions On Obamacare Subsidies

One panel threw out subsidies in the 36 states that did not set up their own insurance exchanges. Another said the IRS rule that set them up was legal.
NPR

Tweeting From A Conflict Zone: Does It Help Or Hurt News Reporting?

As Gaza, Ukraine and Syria trend on Twitter, has social media changed the way conflicts are covered? Host Michel Martin finds out from reporter Anne Barnard and Peter Bouckaert of Human Rights Watch.

Leave a Comment

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