Environmental Justice in Maryland

Every community in the state of Maryland deserves to have their health and environmental safety treated with equity and integrity. Clean Water believes that your health and quality of life should not be determined by your zip code. We work with overburdened communities to ensure their voices are heard.

Sewage Backups in Baltimore

Heavy rainfall stresses all of our infrastructure: flooded transportation systems, leaking houses developing mold, inundated drinking water sources

Oil train with DOT-111 train cars. Photo credit: Todd Klassy / Shutterstock

Fracking & Oil and Gas in Maryland

Clean Water and Don’t Frack MD, a 100 group coalition, pursued a statewide campaign and won passage for the Protect Our Health and Communities Act (HB449/ SB409).

Map of locations of building sewage backups reported to Baltimore City DPW in Fiscal Year 2018

Residential Sewage Backups in Baltimore City, FY2018

The purpose of this essay is to shed light on the issue of basement backups of raw sewage

Building a Baltimore without BRESCO

For decades, the BRESCO trash incinerator has stood as the most recognizable welcome sign to Baltimore. But its towering smokestack is the least of the impacts it has on central Maryland. It burns waste from homes, businesses, schools, and institutions across central Maryland, and contributes significantly to local air pollution.

From We All Live Downstream

Baltimore City Councilman Bill Henry, residents, and advocates in front of City Hall after the Plastic Bag Reduction Bill public hearing.
August 12, 2019

On Tuesday, August 6, the Baltimore City Council's Judiciary Committee held its first public hearing on the Plastic Bag Reduction Bill. This important legislation bans plastic bags in stores in Baltimore, with exceptions for bags used for products like fresh meats, unpackaged fruits, or ice, and locations like farmers' markets and pharmacies. It also puts a 5-cent fee on paper bags - part of which will help the store meet the extra cost of buying and storing paper bags, and part of which can help the city distribute free reusable bags.

Sewage Overflow in Baltimore. Photo by Jennifer Kunze
July 15, 2019

Last year, over 5,000 basement backups were reported to 311 in Baltimore City. The number of basement backups has increased over the years with such a large number of people having to deal with the issue. Baltimore City’s Emergency Response Plan does not require the city to clean up after a basement backup, forcing many homeowners to spend thousands of dollars and expose themselves to an unhealthy environment.

Sediment plume in Baltimore's Inner Harbor. Photo credit: Baltimore Sun.
July 9, 2019

Yesterday the city of Baltimore experienced a severe wet weather event that resulted in flood warnings throughout the DMV area, coupled with a water main break downtown. While the water main break is responsible for the day’s increase in train delays and a strong flow of murky brown water into the inner harbor near Howard and Pratt, an infrastructure failure may not be necessary for the same problem to occur in the near future.