In 2006, the EPA and the Commonwealth of Kentucky filed a lawsuit against Lexington for violating the Clean Water Act, arguing that the city had failed to properly maintain its sanitary and storm sewer systems.
These violations caused pollution and flooding of the waterways near the city, costing the state and federal governments significant environmental remediation costs.
This lawsuit resulted in a settlement between the three parties, called a Consent Decree, which mandated that Lexington spend close to $590 million to repair these systems.
Since the EPA Consent Decree, Lexington has been awarded several honorsfor its clean water programs that were built to address the issue.
Lexington is situated in the middle of several watersheds, including the Kentucky River watershed, the Town Branch, Elkhorn Creek, Cane Run, and Wolf Run watersheds.
When storm and sanitary sewers are hit with rain events that are too significant for them to capture and contain, these waterways flood, sending Lexington’s trash and pollution into neighboring communities.
How can I get involved?
Talk with your friends, family, and neighbors about the watershed they live in, and ask them if they experience any flooding issues in their neighborhoods.
Attend your Neighborhood Association Meeting–do your neighbors experience flooding in their streets?