How does a candidate for Mayor respond to environmental issues? By promising to erect an air filter at the city limits? By forbidding pollution of White River by Hamilton county residents? Most environmental problems just don’t lend themselves to local solutions. To make matters worse, scientific debate rages over the causes…
- Urban sprawl and inadequate mass transit were recognized as environmental problems in 1978, when the city adopted a policy encouraging development where the infrastructure was already in place. The next Mayor needs to take that growth policy seriously, and to develop innovative incentives for so-called "smart" growth.
- Composition of the Air Pollution Board should be periodically reviewed,
- Incentives should be provided for hooking up to the sewer system.
- The overflow from combination sewers–those containing both sewage and
- It is also time to get serious about recycling. While the mass burn
- It isn’t glamorous, but code enforcement remains a potent municipal tool to reduce environmental hazards and unsafe living conditions, from faulty furnace emissions to airborne asbestos. Other cities have expanded their code enforcement activities and upgraded the educational and technical requirements for staff positions; early reports suggest a substantial environmental return on those modest investments.
- Our most troubling local environmental issue is without doubt the widespread presence of lead in the center city. Nuvo Newsweekly has devoted considerable coverage to this issue lately, and its conclusions are largely confirmed by officials at the Board of Health and environmental experts at IUPUI. Childhood lead poisoning leads to numerous problems, most notably mental retardation. Even in less severe cases, a child’s cognitive abilities may suffer irreversable damage. Local health officials have made valiant efforts to educate center city residents about the danger, forming partnerships with neighborhood and community organizations to raise awareness, but their resources simply have not been adequate to the task.