(RICHMOND, VA)—Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe signed legislation today that will require Alexandria to upgrade its outdated combined sewer system by 2025. The Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF), Potomac Riverkeeper Network, and the Virginia League of Conservation Voters released the following statements in response.
Rebecca LePrell, CBF Virginia Executive Director, said:
"This is great news for everybody who spends time on the Potomac River and the Chesapeake Bay. Alexandria's dangerously outdated combined sewer system is currently designed to release raw sewage into the Potomac during wet weather, causing untold human health risks and water quality problems. Now there is finally is a strict deadline for ending these sewer overflows.
"Thank you to Governor McAuliffe and to Virginia's legislators for coming together to address this urgent issue, and thank you to the City of Alexandria for continuing its commitment to restoring the Potomac River and the Chesapeake Bay."
Phillip Musegaas, Vice President of Potomac Riverkeeper Network, said:
"Potomac Riverkeeper is deeply grateful to have Governor McAuliffe as an ally in our fight to protect and restore the Potomac River from sewage pollution that has fouled the river and threatened public health for decades in Alexandria and downstream communities. We applaud Senator Surovell and his colleagues for passing a bipartisan bill that moves us much closer to our vision of a swimmable, fishable Potomac. We look forward to working with Alexandria to make this plan a reality."
Michael Town, Executive Director of Virginia League of Conservation Voters, said:
"This legislation puts the City of Alexandria on a path to cleaning up one of the last combined sewer overflow systems in Virginia. The 2017 legislative session was a bipartisan victory for the Chesapeake Bay. Virginia LCV thanks the governor and the legislature for continuing to make commitments to protect this treasure."