CLEVELAND (AP) - A plan to dramatically reduce untreated sewage into Lake Erie and waterways near Cleveland has been approved by a federal judge.
Thursday ruling's allows the regional sewer district to move forward on a deal reached in December with the federal government.
The agency must spend about $3 billion on pollution controls and pay $1.2 million to the U.S. and Ohio EPAs for past clean water violations.
The Plain Dealer newspaper of Cleveland reports the plan requires building tunnels to reduce untreated sewage discharges from the current level of about 4.5 billion gallons a year to less than 500,000 gallons annually by 2036.
The district serving Cleveland and some five dozen nearby communities also will invest $42 million in green infrastructure projects to help keep storm water out of sewer systems.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)