New York City’s water system is an example of human triumph in engineering. The system carries 1.3 billion gallons of water daily from Upstate to the City. It meets all of the city’s water needs including potable water, manufacturing,fire fighting, and more. In order for this over 150 year old system to be built, a complex history had to ensue that includes evictions, political wars, legal disputes, and deaths. Today, the city’s water supply and wastewater management systems face new challenges. With climate change and aging infrastructure threatening the system's integrity, the city must now take aggressive action to safeguard one of the most important services it provides to its residents. This talk will seek to explain the complex challenges that the New York government faced when building this modern marvel and the challenges that they are confronted with today and the innovative solutions being used to solve them.
Jonah Garnick is a former intern at Ecologic Institute and a fellow at the Congress Bundestag Youth Exchange for Young Professionals, a government exchange program between the United States and Germany. Jonah graduated from the Macaulay Honors College at CUNY Hunter College in New York City with a BA in Urban Studies, where he wrote his senior thesis on New York City's water supply and waste water treatment systems. His academic interests are in urban sustainability, green infrastructure, and the effects of climate change on cities.