Water Delivery & Lead Pipes


The most intimate contact between people and water occurs in the home.  Fresh water reaches individual homes through an elaborate system of underground pipes.  Knowledge about water delivery is just as crucial as knowledge about one’s water source and what can contaminate it.  Lead service pipes in the Great Lakes region were a little discussed risk until the Flint, Michigan water crisis made international news in winter 2016.  Since then, little has been done to fix the problem in Flint, where residents are poised to see their water bills increase.  At the same time, people have become aware of the prevalence of lead pipes throughout the region.

There is much to learn and even more to do about lead pipes, which span a matrix of public land and private property.  This working group will discuss the crises in cities like Washington, D.C. and Flint; outline the mechanics of implementing new delivery systems; and highlight places like Madison, Wisconsin and Lansing, Michigan where entire systems have been replaced.

Summit 2017 Working Group



Panelists include:

  • Anna Clark, Journalist, Knight-Wallace Journalism fellow at the University of Michigan
  • Melissa Mays, Founder, Water You Fighting For & Organizer, Flint Rising
  • Tio Hardiman, Violence Interrupters
  • Kirsten Shead, Community Organizer, Milwaukee Water Commons
  • Oday Salim, Attorney, Great Lakes Environmental Law Center
  • Yanna Lambrinidou, PhD, Department of Science and Technology in Society, Virginia Tech. 

Facilitated by:

  • Bryant Williams, President, BK Environmental Industries