Caption: The Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District is required to post warning signs near every sewer overflow., Credit: (Véronique LaCapra, St. Louis Public Radio)
Image by: (Véronique LaCapra, St. Louis Public Radio) 
The Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District is required to post warning signs near every sewer overflow. 

Inside the St. Louis sewer system: fixing a messy problem

From: Veronique LaCapra
Length: 03:54

Embed_button
St. Louis is one of hundreds of older cities across the country facing the challenge of dealing with an aging sewer system. This summer, the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District settled a four-year lawsuit with the Environmental Protection Agency over violations of the Clean Water Act. Under the terms of the consent decree, MSD will spend the next 23 years upgrading the St. Louis area sewer system. St. Louis Public Radio’s Véronique LaCapra looks at the problems with our sewers – and what it’s going to take to fix them. Read the full description.

Dsc_0520web600featurephoto_small St. Louis is one of hundreds of older cities across the country facing the challenge of dealing with an aging sewer system. This summer, the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District settled a four-year lawsuit with the Environmental Protection Agency over violations of the Clean Water Act. Under the terms of the consent decree, MSD will spend the next 23 years upgrading the St. Louis area sewer system. St. Louis Public Radio’s Véronique LaCapra looks at the problems with our sewers – and what it’s going to take to fix them.

More from Veronique LaCapra

Piece image

Audio Postcard: Trumpeter Swans Flock in Record Numbers to Midwestern Bird Sanctuary (03:33)
From: Veronique LaCapra

By the early 20th century, trumpeter swans had almost disappeared from the lower 48 states. But re-population efforts have helped these majestic birds recover. They now ...
Caption:  Maricruz Jaramillo (standing) and Samoa Asigau wait for their ride back to the Charles Darwin Research Station after an early morning of catching birds in an agricultural area on Santa Cruz Island., Credit: Véronique LaCapra, St. Louis Public Radio

Following in Darwin's Footsteps: Two Young Women Scientists Forge Their Futures in the Galapagos (06:34)
From: Veronique LaCapra

What motivates young people to become scientists? Meet Maricruz Jaramillo and Samoa Asigau, two young women scientists from opposite sides of the Pacific Ocean, whose ...
Caption: Rachel Delston works with cancer cells in the lab at Confluence Life Sciences., Credit: Sarah Skiöld-Hanlin/St. Louis Public Radio

Sequestration Budget Cuts Hit St. Louis Scientists (06:06)
From: Veronique LaCapra

It has been just over three months since the federal spending cuts known as sequestration first took effect. A handful of programs were spared — but not scientific research, ...
Caption: At a ranch near Mpala, Margaret Kinnaird takes notes about a camel sick with trypanosomiasis as a herder looks on., Credit: Sharon Deem, Saint Louis Zoo

Tackling Q Fever and Other Camel Diseases in Kenya (03:41)
From: Veronique LaCapra

Camels are known for their ability to travel long distances across the desert without water. But they’re also becoming an increasingly important source of milk for people in ...
Caption: A chimpanzee sounds its call in the Goualougo Triangle., Credit: Ian Nichols

Life of chimp research and 'adventure' for Midwestern scientific duo (03:50)
From: Veronique LaCapra

For more than a decade, Washington University anthropologist Crickette Sanz and Lincoln Park Zoo research conservationist David Morgan have lived and worked in a remote ...
Caption: Richard Freese sits in the waiting room of Family Care Health Centers in St. Louis. Freese is self-employed, but doesn't have access to Medicaid., Credit: Veronique LaCapra/St. Louis Public Radio

Show-Me Medicaid expansion? Missouri weighs the costs. (06:07)
From: Veronique LaCapra

This feature explores what Medicaid expansion would mean for Missouri's working poor, from the personal perspective of a clinic doctor and two of her patients.
Caption: "Vitruvian Man" by Leonardo da Vinci., Credit: via Wikimedia Commons/Leonardo da Vinci, Galleria dell' Accademia, Venice (1485-90)

Opinion: exploring the ethics of human testing (06:11)
From: Veronique LaCapra

A conversation with Washington University law professor Rebecca Dresser, about an article she recently published in the journal Science about the ethics of human testing, and ...
Caption: At 82 years old, Edward O. Wilson continues to work and publish in the fields of ecology and evolution. , Credit: Véronique LaCapra/St. Louis Public Radio

Edward O. Wilson: a conversation with a scientific pioneer (03:40)
From: Veronique LaCapra

This is a 3:40 Q&A I did with renowned evolutionary ecologist E.O. Wilson, who developed the theory of island biogeography (one of the founding principles of conservation ...
Caption: Pinon pine trees like this one dominate Rattlesnake Canyon., Credit: Jeff Mitton

Pipe Down! That Noise Might Affect Your Plants (03:14)
From: Veronique LaCapra

Plants don't have ears, right? And if they can't hear you would assume that noise wouldn't matter much to them, which is why researchers haven't given much thought to the ...
Caption: A little brown bat showing symptoms of white-nose syndrome in Greeley Mine, Vermont (April, 2009)., Credit: (Marvin Moriarity/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

White nose syndrome spreads west (03:34)
From: Veronique LaCapra

Bad news for the bat population, a disease that has killed more than five million bats in the eastern United States and Canada has now reached Missouri. White-nose syndrome ...

Piece Description

Broadcast History

Aired November 14, 2011, on St. Louis Public Radio (90.7 KWMU).

Transcript

HOST IN: St. Louis is one of hundreds of older cities across the country facing the challenge of dealing with an aging sewer system.

This summer, the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District settled a four-year lawsuit with the Environmental Protection Agency over violations of the Clean Water Act.

Under the terms of the consent decree, MSD will spend the next 23 years upgrading the St. Louis area sewer system.

St. Louis Public Radio’s Véronique LaCapra [vair-uh-NEEK la-CAP-rah] looks at the problems with our sewers – and what it’s going to take to fix them.

(SEWERS1)
3:54

CUT 1 LANCE LECOMB (0:03)
“This is sewage. This is raw sewage.”

LACAPRA: MSD spokesperson Lance LeComb is taking me on a tour. Our first stop is several stories under Forest Park.

CUT 2 LANCE LECOMB (0:09)
“We’re standing inside the combined sewer system. What you see going in front of us is wastewater for homes a...
Read the full transcript

Intro and Outro

INTRO:

St. Louis is one of hundreds of older cities across the country facing the challenge of dealing with an aging sewer system.

This summer, the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District settled a four-year lawsuit with the Environmental Protection Agency over violations of the Clean Water Act.

Under the terms of the consent decree, MSD will spend the next 23 years upgrading the St. Louis area sewer system.

St. Louis Public Radio’s Véronique LaCapra [vair-uh-NEEK la-CAP-rah] looks at the problems with our sewers – and what it’s going to take to fix them.

OUTRO:

Related Website

http://www.news.stlpublicradio.org/post/inside-st-louis-sewer-system-part-1-fixing-messy-problem