East Bay Express: Regulators Probe Alameda Sewage Controversy, November 1, 2017


Federal and state regulators are investigating whether the city of Alameda has violated a court-mandated sewer repair program that was designed to keep raw sewage and other pollutants from seeping into San Francisco Bay, the Express has learned.

The probe by officials with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board concerns the recent opening at Alameda Point of Admiral Maltings, which manufactures malt used in beer fermentation, and the Almanac Beer Company, a local brewer.

The city allowed the new businesses to open in Building 91 of the former Naval Air Station without replacing old sewer pipes, city records show. And environmentalists now worry that raw sewage from the new businesses could end up in the bay through a process known as inflow and infiltration. During heavy rains, stormwater infiltrates holes and cracks in old sewer pipes and causes overflows at collection stations. Those stations are then forced to dump the untreated waste into the bay.