Tuesday, May 22, 2007

EPA Reaches Historic Sewage Outflow Agreement with Pittsburgh City Council

Pittsburgh, PA (Reuters) - Fresh on the heels of an agreement with ALCOSAN, the US Environmental Protection Agency has reached a historic accord with Pittsburgh City Council to stem the flow of human excrement coming out of 414 Grant Street. The agreement will result in the largest containment of fecal material in a incorporated municipality in the history of the Country.

Pittsburgh City Council President Doug Shields signed a consent decree yesterday, although the signature of Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protect and EPA representatives are also necessary.

The agreement will provide for a new special excrement holding tank located entirely within City Council Chambers. Effluent will be released in a controlled manner on a weekly basis to minimize impact on the fragile political ecosystem. The system will also provide for a general flushing the first Tuesday following the first Monday in both May and November.

The fecal discharges coming from City Council, first noticed in the early 1980s, have become more regular over the last decade. Human effluent has permeated most of Downtown and has begun to infiltrate other East End neighborhoods. Residents in East Liberty have frequently complained to the DEP over the rank smell of sewage emanating from south of Centre Avenue.

A similar plan has been proposed elsewhere in the Commonwealth. Harrisburg, which sits on a mound of human waste, has taken tentative steps towards removing contamination. Critics charge, however, that the excrement has only been moved to Law Firms, Nightly Talk Shows, and News Radio, where no one knows the difference. Additionally, as old waste has move out of the Capital, new waste has been generated to take its place.

Mr. Shields feels that such problems will not be encountered in the City of Pittsburgh.

"This agreement will be honored in full faith by this Council. We challenge the Mayor's Office, the County Executive's Office, and County Council to sign on as well. Such a historic accord must be all inclusive and stand as a testament to our commitment to rid the political environment of human effluent, excrement, and bovine fecal material. We owe this not only to ourselves but to our children and our children's children and our children's children's children. In this post 9/11 world, this will be a vital tool in ensuring that the terrorists are fought over there and not over here. And may God Bless America."

Mr. Shields was immediately fined $500.

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