DHEC fines – not so fine

The second-largest fine levied by the Department of Health and Environmental Control in the past five years – $830,000 against Richland County for sewage violations – was essentially cut in half because of a quirk in state law that gives half of any fine to the county were the violation occurred, a Journal investigation found. […]

A crazy night

After a night of torrential rains and tornado watches across the Upstate, meteorologists with the National Weather Service in Greer are predicting better weather today. The forecast is calling for mostly sunny skies with a high near 56 degrees. But it could get breezy at times. A west wind is expected between 13 to 16 […]

Of hazards and mitigation

Think of Greenville County’s latest natural disaster plan as a lightening rod on the roof of your house. It is put there on a sunny day in anticipation of the stormy one. When the storm does come and the bolt from above strikes, it is diverted harmlessly into the ground. It is a simple explanation […]

Slater sewer will get an overhaul

The imminent takeover of Slater’s decrepit sewer system by the Metropolitan Sewer Subdistrict will relieve the residents of this old mill village of more than an odiferous problem. It may well prove to be one of those rare scenarios where governmental action to serve the local public good actually does so and in a fashion […]

Haynie-Sirrine sewer fix pending

It will take just over $3 million to fix a warren of leaky sewer pipes in the Haynie-Sirrine basin. The city has options on timing and financing the work, which would require a slight increase in sewage fees from about $13 to $19 citywide for five years to rush the work to completion and the […]

Water reform needed, group says

Environmental groups and state agencies fear 2010 will be the last time in the foreseeable future that the state has a chance to get ahead of its water woes. “Part of the problem is the drought is over,” said Patrick Moore of the Coastal Conservation League (CCL). “The other part of the problem is that […]

Keeping it earth friendly

It took dumpster diving and an essential change in Southern culture for Freightliner Custom Chassis to go from 250,000 pounds of landfill trash a month to zero. Admittedly the South, overall, has been a late comer to environmental consciousness, said Bill Harris, environmental engineering supervisor with Freightliner in Gaffney. “But once we convinced our people […]

Major polluters, minor fines

Buried in the minutia of the state Department of Environmental Control’s statistical maze is an enforcement record on pollution issues with major industries that critics call dismal. The numbers are hard to get to within the DHEC database, but are easily found in the federal Environmental Protection Agency’s Enforcement and Compliance History Online (ECHO) database. […]

Ozone levels leave room for improvement

Federal ground level ozone standards have become a moving target, one that business advocates fear as a brake on industrial expansion and environmental activists applaud as a boon to public health. New standards contemplated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency would lower the ozone limit from .085 to .075. It is a miniscule change, but […]

Green’s the thing

Ann Wynn lives in principle. Literally. When she moved from California to Simpsonville to be near her daughter and son-in-law, she wanted a house she needed, no more, no less. She wanted it energy efficient and environmentally friendly to lower utility costs and to save trees on the mostly wooded seven acres where her daughter’s […]

County still ponders drought status here

The rains this spring that broke a decade-long drought also produced a $1.3 million drop in revenues from what was projected by Greenville Water System budgeters, said Lynn Stovall, general manager for the system. “When you go back and look at the figures (that were reported in June) for March, April and May you see […]

Cost drains plans for water pipeline

Community outrage over a $5,900 price tag has prompted county officials to scale back plans for bringing Greenville city water to Possum Kingdom in Southern Greenville County. At a public hearing held last week at Beech Springs Tabernacle in Ware Place Councilman Fed Payne and backers of the proposal were blasted by residents angered over […]

Brownfields site could go green

A survey of potential properties that would be part of a new 80- to 105-acre park upstream of Falls Park on the Reedy River is set to get under way, said Dana Souza, the city’s parks and recreation director. With certain restrictions, the recreation facility would sit largely on a Brownfields site – old industrial […]

Cost drains plan for water service

Community outrage over a $5,900 price tag has prompted county officials to scale back plans for bringing Greenville city water to Possum Kingdom in Southern Greenville County. At a public hearing held last week at Beech Springs Tabernacle in Ware Place Councilman Fed Payne and backers of the proposal were blasted by residents angered over […]

And then the rain

Heavy morning rains turned the Reedy River into a flowing brown mess that has inched higher and higher toward Greenville roads as the National Weather Service put the county under a flash flood warning. However, city officials said that recent cleanings of catch basins along the river and its tributaries likely will prevent any major […]