Storm Water Advisory Committee holds open house

FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - There was a Storm Water Advisory Committee public open house on Tuesday evening at the Noel Wein Library.

Fairbanks city engineer Jackson Fox gave a presentation that was primarily about water pollution in Fairbanks, occurring in both the Chena River and Noyes Slough.

He gave a lot of information about the historical dumping of pollution in the early 1900s, and how much things have improved since then.

Storm water is runoff from rain or melting snow that makes its way down into the city's storm drain system.

Fox talked about some of the local programs where the public can help out with cleaning the pollution around town. He also shared a little about the general history of pollution in Fairbanks over the years.

"The Chena River was the official dump site for the city of Fairbanks for all the garbage that our residences and businesses had created. It was common practice back then to dump that in there, and of course we no longer do that. But as you move through the decades in the early 1900s and to the mid 1900s, there were still other things being dumped into our local waterways including coal ash and sewage. It wasn't until the passage of the clean water act of 1972 that there was some major regulation that came down to prohibit certain things like that trash and sewage, used oil and different things like that from being just freely dumped into our local waterways," said Fox.