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Water will flow through KWA pipeline to Genesee County starting this weekend

Steve Carmody
Michigan Radio
Visitors wander through Genesee County's new water plant that will treat water brought from Lake Huron through the KWA pipeline.

After years of construction, water from Lake Huron soon will begin flowing into Genesee County through the KWA pipeline.

The Karegnondi Water Authority pipelinewas completed last year. But testing and permitting, as well as construction of a new water treatment plant, have delayed water flowing through the pipeline. Until now.

“We’ll actually start pushing this treated water through this plant by this coming weekend,” says Jeff Wright, the Genesee County drain commissioner. He was among dozens of people attending ceremonies at the $100 million plant today.

At one time, the city of Flint was supposed to get its drinking water from the KWA.

Water activists have often blamed KWA for Flint’s lead-tainted tap water crisis. But Jeff Wright reminds anyone who asks that KWA had nothing directly to do with the mistakes made with treating Flint River water.

KWA officials say the pipeline will aid economic development in the Thumb region, providing both treated and raw water from Lake Huron for a variety of businesses.      

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.