During every moment of every day, northeastern Illinois is losing Lake Michigan water – and with it, the money rate payers contributed to pumping, treating and distributing this water. Yet while we know our region is losing vast sums of Lake Michigan water, and we know this inefficiency is costing us money, we do not have a clear picture of how much water or how much money we are wasting. The best available data suggest the problem is enormous – approximately 490 million gallons a week, enough water to fill more than one Willis Tower. However, the way Illinois grants Lake Michigan water permits does not capture data that identify the causes of loss and solutions to prevent it. That’s just one reason why the Ill. Dept. of Natural Resources (IDNR) has proposed changing the permit process.
Recorded live Tuesday, May 7, 2013 at the Metropolitan Planning Council.