Lincoln:Pump Installed at Buffalo River to Stop Sewage

Little Rock – U.S. Senator Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) today commended the Arkansas Rural Water Association and Arkansas Natural Resources Commission for working together to stop the flow of sewage into Mill Creek, a tributary of the Buffalo National River.  

 A broken pump caused by the January 2009 ice storm had allowed raw sewage to flow into the Buffalo for nearly a year.

 Last week, Senator Lincoln’s office asked the Arkansas Rural Water Association (ARWA) to look into the situation and determine if they might be helpful with an interim solution.  ARWA stepped in to provide a temporary pump until a long-term solution can be found.  The Arkansas Natural Resources Commission has contributed $10,000 to defray the ARWA’s costs.   

 “The Buffalo River is a source of pride for our state and has provided my family with great memories with our annual summer fishing trips,” Senator Lincoln said.  “With canoeing season approaching, Arkansans and visitors across the nation will be able to enjoy the river.  I commend the folks of the Arkansas Rural Water Association and Arkansas Natural Resources Commission who answered the call to preserve the Buffalo.”

 Dennis Sternberg, Executive Director of the Arkansas Rural Water Association (ARWA) said, “After being contacted by Senator Lincoln’s office about the need for assistance to prevent any further sewage discharge from this malfunctioning sewer pump station, Arkansas Rural Water Association sent three field technicians to the site.  By Friday night, the ARWA staff had a portable by-pass pump pumping sewage.  I am very thankful that Senator Lincoln and Arkansas Natural Resources Commission got involved to provide their assistance and leadership. This truly shows how much they care about the environment.”

 Greg Watts, President of the Arkansas Rivers Association, said, “A great deal of gratitude goes out to Senator Lincoln, the AR Rural Water Association,  ANRC, ADEQ, and all who have helped and worked together to find a solution to this terrible situation.”