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The Coalition for Better Wastewater solutions was created by Beth Abrams in 1992 when the city of San Francisco was attempting to build a cross-town tunnel to transport the city’s wastewater across the city and dump this wastewater into the Pacific Ocean. Soon after the the Coalition for Better Wastewater Solutions was formed, Jeff Marmer became the chair of the Coalition, and under Jeff’s stellar leadership the Coalition helped SAEJ (the Southeast Alliance for Environmental Justice) stop the creation of yet another polluting power plant as well as form critical alliances to defeat the cross town tunnel. 

Capturing rain  into rain barrel originally proposed by the Coalition For Better Wastewater Solutions, simultaneously diverts rainwater from sewage drains, preventing the water becoming contaminated from city street oil and other pollutants, helps prevents sewage overflows, and helps provide critical water for city gardens during the drought. Rain barrels are a regular part of San Francisco’s arsenal of drought mitigation.

The Coalition for Better Wastewater Solutions

The Coalition for Better Wastewater Solutions gathered together a team of scientists with alternative solutions including many passive and environmentally superior ways of treating wastewater. The Coalition for Better Wastewater  Solutions united many San Francisco residents and groups including the Surf Rider Foundation, and the Southeast Alliance for Environmental Justice (SAEJ) to educate the San Francisco Supervisors as to the terrible environmental dangers of the cross town tunnel and proposed dumping posed. The 8 year struggle to defeat the cross town tunnel was successful, (!) and subsequently the Coalition helped to form a waterfront alliance that continues to monitor  San Francisco wastewater and related water issues. The Coalition for Better Wastewater Solutions was a key force in educating the city to require low-flush toilets and begin a rain barrel water savings program, which both saves necessary water from becoming polluted run-off causing sewer overflows, and provides essential water for irrigation during drought. This rain barrel program is very much a part of San Francisco’s current efforts to cope with drought and a challenged sewer system. The Coalition for Better Wastewater Solutions became a project of BACPAJE in 1999 upon its incorporation.

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