Under Water

Polluted water has flooded homes, restaurants, roads, trails, parks, and parking lots causing damage, and more rain is in the forecast. See Michael Hawthorne's story in the Chicago Tribune for a good explanation of what happens.

 The Tunnel and Reservoir Plan (TARP) currently provides 12 billion gallons of pretreatment storage but even when it is finished in 2029 and will have a capacity of 18.5 billion gallons it will be insufficient. The climate crisis and lack of permeable open space is making it hard to manage in these storms.

Friends supports a global climate action plan to address the broader issue of worsening rainstorms and local efforts to capture rainwater the old fashioned way - by letting it absorb into the ground. These nature-based solutions have a myriad of benefits beyond absorbing stormwater. They range from providing much need wildlife habitat to reducing the urban heat island effect to providing open space where people can get outdoors and enjoy nature. That improve public health and wellness.

You can help by participating in Overflow Action Days, the My Chicago River Day Summer Challenge, and by implementing your own nature based solutions by replacing turf grass with native grasses and flowers. The birds, the bees, the river, and your neighbors will thank you.