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Waste Digesters

Policy Topics for the Fall

I last wrote in February about local policy topics that I thought were interesting. See, Policy Topics for the Spring and before that Four Public Topics for the Fall (2014). In February, these were my selections:  Whitewater School Budget Cuts, the Whitewater’s School Board Election, the UW-Whitewater’s Budget, UW-Whitewater’s Social Relations, and the City of…

Consultants, Presentations, Politicians, Funding, and Construction

Post 21 in a series. When Green Turns Brown is an examination of a small town’s digester-energy project, in which Whitewater, Wisconsin would import other cities’ waste, claiming that the result would be both profitable and green. Sometimes a proposal, with its attendant consultants, presentations, supportive politicians, taxpayer funding, and construction plans takes on an…

Fifteen Months Later, at the School Board

Post 7 in a series. 3.16.15 Wastewater & Waste Importation Presentation to Whitewater Unified School District from John Adams on Vimeo. Jump ahead almost fifteen months, from 12.3.13 to 3.16.15, and City Manager Clapper and Wastewater Superintendent Reel are at the Whitewater Unified School District. Months later, and millions in spending requests, but still lots…

Question Bin

Post 6 in a series. A list of questions, updated as new ones arise, from When Green Turns Brown. Find this post, and you’ll have found all the questions from the entire series as they’re added . (Every question in this series has a unique number, assigned consecutively based on when it was asked. All…

Looking at the 12.3.13 Digester Presentation

Post 4 in a series. 12.3.13 Whitewater WI Common Council Digester Importation Discussion from John Adams on Vimeo. I promised last week a look at the December 3, 2013 digester presentation, from Whitewater’s Wastewater Superintendent Tim Reel, and City Manager Cameron Clapper. In that presentation (not so long ago, only about a year-and a-half) and…

The City of Whitewater Digester Clarification That Could Use a Clarification

There’s a paragraph from Whitewater’s City Manager Update for 3.20.15 that proposes a clarification about the digester project proposed as part of an overall, $20.7 million-dollar upgrade to the city’s wastewater treatment facilities. First, the city’s clarification (my emphasis added): Wastewater Treatment Facility Upgrade Clarification When an issue as complex and technically detailed as the…

Policy Topics for the Spring

In October 2014, I wrote about Four Public Topics for the Fall.  They seemed to be the city’s prominent public policy questions, looking ahead from 10.20.14.  Those topics were (1) the 2015 City of Whitewater budget, (2) Whitewater Schools referendum, (3) UW-Whitewater’s social relations, and the (4) City of Whitewater’s waste digester proposal. Now, as…

The Wastewater Facility Upgrades and a Digester

On Tuesday night, Common Council heard the proposed cost of wastewater upgrades ($18.7 million) and the separate possibility of large digester. Let’s be clear about what a big digester’s “solids treatment” truly is: a process of importing other cities’ unwanted manure, human excrement, and industrial filth into Whitewater.  A few quick comments, as there is…

Update on a Digester Project: ‘Wastewater Facility Poised for Upgrades: Memo 4’

On Thursday, I posted about a technical memo on the City of Whitewater’s website, entitled, ‘Wastewater Facility Poised for Upgrades: Memo 4.’ The memo concerned the digester at the wastewater facility, and contained one line of text: ‘Technical Memorandum #4 – Digestion Complex and Energy Production – In Progress.’ In my post, I said that…

‘Wastewater Facility Poised for Upgrades: Memo 4’

Over at the City of Whitewater’s website, there is an announcement entitled, Wastewater Facility Poised for Upgrades  (http://www.whitewater-wi.gov/residents/recent-news/2803-wastewater-facility-poised-for-upgrades).   Among several memos about these upgrades, one finds Memo 4 – Digestion Complex and Energy Production. The text of that memo (embedded below) is brief: Technical Memorandum #4 – Digestion Complex and Energy Production – In…

One Year On 

Some ideas, good or bad, are worth remarking on promptly.   Some, but not all: there are times when a proposal is so destructive of a community’s well-being, so terribly misguided, that a few remarks, or even many, would not be enough.   In those times, one meets a light, misplaced enthusiasm with diligent, well-placed work.…

The New, Old Idea

Over these last few weeks, I’ve received messages from readers asking my view of a new digester proposal first mentioned at Council on December 3rd (but discussed, I know, among officials well before that). Like others, I’ve quietly watched the progression of this second digester plan.  (I have posted occasionally at FW about a prior…

The End of the Waste Digester Proposal in Whitewater

Earlier this week, I posted about a closed-session agenda item of the Tech Park Board about ‘negotiations’ with Green Energy Holdings concerning a waste digester in the city. Of the scope of those negotiations I had no idea. As readers surely know, I think there are sound objections of municipal finance, community development, economic policy,…