By Eric Lutz and Erin McCormick, The Guardian, September 21, 2021
Bobbie Clay first realized something was wrong a few years ago.
The water at her Benton Harbor, Michigan, home had started coming out of the tap looking “bubbly and whitish”. When she filled a glass with it, she could see matter floating around inside. “I became very concerned,” she recalled in a recent interview.
She wasn’t alone. For years, residents of this small, struggling city in south-west Michigan had been having similar problems. When Carmela Patton turned on her sink to make coffee, the water came out brown. When Emma Kinnard ran hers, it came out the color of tea and “sizzling like Alka-Seltzer”. Rasta Smith said his water looked normal, but had a “horrible” taste and a smell that reminded him of rotting sewage. “It’s bad, man,” he said. “It’s real bad.”