Landmark Settlement Leads to Much Improved Sewer System in Honolulu
July 14, 2010
After several years of litigation, Sierra Club and its allies have finally reached settlement with the city of Honolulu that will drastically improve the city’s aging sewer system. In 2004, Sierra Club, Hawaii Thousand Friends, and Our Children's Earth Foundation filed a Clean Water Act lawsuit against the city of Honolulu for illegally discharging poorly treated waste from its two main sewage plants and dumping raw sewage into the city’s waterways.
The settlement requires the city to retrofit its sewers during the next ten years. Under the settlement, the city must designate more than $1 billion for upgrades to its two main sewage treatment plants. The money will also be used for construction of new force mains; inspection, repair and replacement of more than 1,000 miles of sewer line; and capacity upgrades at pump stations. Additionally, the city must prepare annual progress reports and report all sewage spills, and will face severe fines if it does not meet compliance deadlines.
For several years, Sierra Club and its allies have worked to improve the city’s ailing sewage system. This settlement represents a monumental victory for Honolulu, its residents, and waterways.
See other "Safeguarding Communities" cases.