Monday, February 28, 2011

Meddling government policy has unintended consequences, news at 11!

Oh, the tasty Schadenfreude.

San Francisco provides a subsidy for  low-flow toilets.

San Francisco gets huge stench from low flow toilets clogging up drains.

San Francisco buys huge amounts of bleach to try to combat the stench.

In terms of scoring that policy, it saves 20 million gallons of water, but uses but uses 8.5 million pounds of bleach, which will go into drains or the drinking water supply. I don't know about you, but I'd score that as an environmental loss, or at best breaking even.

Meanwhile, the cost of the bleach is $14 million, they spent $100 million upgrading the sewer system to deal with the problem, as well as the cost of the subsidy itself, whatever that is.

Shylock says, it's a bargain!

Another money quote from the article:
A Don't Bleach Our Bay alert has just gone out from eco-blogger Adam Lowry who argues the city would be much better off using a disinfectant like hydrogen peroxide - or better yet, a solution that would naturally break down the bacteria.
A natural solution! Brilliant! We'll break the poo down with magic pixie dust. I'm sure Adam Lowry is hard at work right now, toiling in a biology lab to generate this new solution.

What's that you say? He's just lazily demanding that someone else do it, on the premise that because he wants it to happen, it's got to be feasible?

Personally I like the idea of San Francisco living in the stench of it's own filth. It seems like a fitting monument to the governance of the place.

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