Former Mayor Richard M. Daley wanted to make Chicago the greenest city in America. He got a lot of credit for being environmentally friendly but the record turned out to be mixed: more green roofs but still no city-wide recycling.
The annual Windy City Rubber Ducky Derby dumped more than 30,000 rubber ducks into the Chicago River in an effort to raise money for the Illinois Special Olympics on Thursday.The event attracts crowds to the river, without having to dye it green.
Back in the 19th century, Chicago had a problem: Its river went the wrong way, washing sewage into its drinking water supply in Lake Michigan, spreading diseases like cholera and dysentery. The solution sounded crazy: turn the river around.
In connecting the Great Lake Michigan to the Mighty Mississippi, Chicago left the back door open to some unwelcome visitors. Asian Carp are the latest threat and our last line of defense spans the Sanitary and Ship Canal, about 30 miles southwest of the city.
More than a century ago, Chicago used a combination of grit, muscle and money to turn around the Chicago River. That move forged an important connection between the Great Lake Michigan and the mighty Mississippi. But it also had some unintended consequences that are coming to a head only now.