Potomac's Status As 'Most Threatened' River Resonates In Alexandria | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : Morning Edition

Potomac's Status As 'Most Threatened' River Resonates In Alexandria

Play associated audio
 
A view of some of the development that's already along the Potomac Riverfront in Alexandria.
 
Adam Fagen (http://www.flickr.com/photos/afagen/6811967296/)
  A view of some of the development that's already along the Potomac Riverfront in Alexandria.  

A leading environmental group says growth and development in the region is causing some major problems for the Potomac River. In Alexandria, that report could have reverberations on the debate over the future of the waterfront.

American Rivers is singling out the Potomac as the most endangered river in America, a distinction that indicates the waterway is threatened by pollution and development. American Rivers president Bob Irvin says the concerns should be part of land-use decisions along the waterfront.

"Anytime you are building more impervious surfaces around the river, you have to worry that that's going to both increase the volume of runoff," Irvin says. "Also, there won't be opportunities to filter out harmful pollutants."

Earlier this year, the Alexandria City Council passed a plan that would more than double the amount of development allowed on three sites on the Potomac River. Supporters say revenue from new development would allow the city to pay for flood control. But opponents such as former Vice Mayor Andrew MacDonald say the plan is a threat to the Potomac River.

"You can't undo the damage of adding new impervious surfaces to the shoreline," MacDonald says. "You are better off creating more green space that can flood and has more natural qualities." 

The report acknowledges that the Potomac is cleaner than it used to be, although the river is still threatened by urban pollution.

WAMU 88.5

Art Beat With Lauren Landau, July 14

You can check out a band from Chicago or see a solo show about a man whose brutal beating lit a city on fire.

NPR

Saskawhat? A Novel Berry From Canada Takes Root On Michigan Farms

Some rookie farmers in northern Michigan are growing saskatoon, an imported shrub from Canada that looks like blueberry. They're also experimenting with it in the kitchen — in jams and pies.
WAMU 88.5

Maryland's Andy Harris Defends Move To Block D.C. Marijuana Bill

The Maryland Republican Congressman who moved to block a bill that would decriminalize marijuana in D.C. defended his actions and criticized the move to boycott businesses in his district, which includes popular tourist destination Ocean City.

NPR

Looking For Free Sperm, Women May Turn To Online Forums

Bypassing commercial sperm banks, thousands are logging on to websites where women can connect with men at no cost. Anecdotes abound, but the scope of the unregulated activity is unclear.

Leave a Comment

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