City & County Department Protects Our Home

Where do I go?  Where do we all go?  Did anybody else know that the City and County of Honolulu’s Department of Environmental Services (the ENV) does and is doing smoke testing?  Does anybody else even know what smoke testing is?!?  Am I the only clueless one?  Maybe I am, I don’t know.  Anyway, I checked into it and now I’m sharing it with anyone else who did not know the City and County of Honolulu is working hard for all of us and for our home!

Dump No Waste signed carved into sidewalkYou know how we’re always concerned about our ocean and water supplies?

Smoke testing is a proactive, preventative approach to protecting our environment from any more dreaded sewage spills.  The ENV (Department of Environmental Services) pumps smoke into the sewage lines and checks the lines for leaking smoke.  What a great idea!  They use smoke to find leakages and/or breaks rather than using some kind of liquid to further complicate matters.

Wait, wait, wait — relax, don’t get all nervous.  The smoke “is non-toxic, harmless and has minimal odor.  The smoke is not a fire hazard and does not pose a health hazard to humans or pets.”  This smoke will lead the workers to any breaks in the lines that may allow the runoff from heavy rains to infiltrate the sewage lines, further inundate the treatment plants, and ultimately create an overflow situation.   This kind of testing has apparently been going on for about four years.  Where was I?

Canal Drain

I couldn’t really find many appropriate pictures except ones that show how we need to pump up our care of our water — both fresh and ocean.

Trash in water of canal

Pretty yucky, huh?  These are just to prove a point about just how important the protection of our environment has become.

Since my pictures don’t help much with the explanation of the sewage project I’m talking about, let’s be sure we understand this clearly.  It’s not just the leaks where things can get out of the lines; it’s for the prevention of things liCurbside Drainke excessive rain water from getting in to these lines.  If there are places with illegal hook-ups to the sewer system or places where excessive rainwater can get into the line, we could end up with a sewage system finding itself overloaded beyond its capacity.

Remember the Ala Wai?  Something like that. I was not happy and I know a lot of others were even worse.  Was there really an alternative?  Probably not.  The Public Communications Officer over at the Department of Environmental Services pointed that out to me and, while I’ve finally resigned myself to accepting the fact that there were few or no other options, I’m still not happy about it.  Let’s set up a way to avoid having the same thing happen again!

That Public Communications Officer actually returned my call.  He probably thought I was crazy but then he’s just as crazy as I am because he was checking his voice mail on a Sunday!

I just think that this is some of the coolest news I’ve heard in quite some time.  There are places that are “broken” so let’s fix them before they create another sewage fiasco!

They were working in Wahiawa when I read about them.  I guess they’ll be making the rounds.  There are an awful lot of pipelines on this island and this is quite a project!  There are a lot of things that I disapprove of but this is a project that I am happy to spend my tax dollar on!

Working on the sewers and the sewage system has got to be a thankless job.  I’m here to say that I am both very proud and so very grateful for all they’re doing.  Hats off to our protectors over and the City & County of Honolulu’s ENV — “Mahalo!” you guys for caring about our home!

If I’ve missed something or not stated something correctly, please feel free to correct me in the comments below.  Please?  I’m more than happy to receive those corrections.  That way, everyone can benefit from the knowledge you have to share and we can all better understand all of what you guys are doing for us.  Seriously!

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