Will the Chicago River Reverse?
Statements in recent news stories call the Chicago River an open sewer and create a specter of raw sewage pouring into Lake Michigan if the river reverses. The fact is that statement is patently untrue.
While the water quality of the Chicago River is still compromised, it is not an open sewer and is instead a recreational, natural, and economic treasure alive with people and wildlife forming the lifeblood of downtown Chicago and many other communities. The flow of the river (which won’t just simply reverse on its own due to a series of locks) is a micro-story in the much larger and scarier story of why the lakes have receded so much and is another call to action for why water conservation and continued water quality improvement for all our rivers, lakes, and streams are essential.