Elon Musk Keeps His Promise and Helps a City Get Clean Water

The Musk foundation donated $480,350 to the city of Flint so it can install new ultraviolet water filtration systems for all its water fountains in school buildings.


(By Steve Jurvetson from Menlo Park, USA - Elon Musk at TED 2017, CC BY 2.0, Link)

Elon Musk made good on his promise help Flint, Michigan get clean water and donated almost half a million dollars to install new water filtration systems to schools in the city.

In July, a user on Twitter used some reverse psychology on Musk, telling him would be “NO WAY you could help get clean water to Flint, Michigan.” The famed Tesla CEO took up the challenge and immediately responded that he would take care of it.

Flint Community Schools Superintendent Derrick Lopez said in a statement that his city is "deeply grateful for the generosity between The Musk foundations and Elon Musk. The new water filtration system will be instrumental in helping our students return to normalcy of what should be a fundamental right to have safe, clean drinking water from water fountains in their schools."

The filtration system uses an ultraviolet purification method that will disinfect and remove bacteria from water pipes. New water fountains will also be installed in all 12 schools of the district. This generous gift will allow students to drink from water fountains instead of using water bottles. By the end of January 2019, all new systems are expected to be in place.

Flint’s troubled history with its water began in 2014 when the city switched its water source from the city of Detroit to the Flint River in an attempt to reduce expenses. Unfortunately, the economically depressed community failed to apply corrosion inhibitors, which reduce the release of heavy metals from the old pipe system and contaminated water.

Because of the heavy pollution, the water was deemed unsafe and Flint’s residents were instructed to use only bottled water. In early 2017, water tests showed that lead levels had dropped to safe levels, but ongoing testing in schools found that some samples still exceeded thresholds believed to be safe.

The complicated relationship between the residents of Flint and the city’s official makes it hard for people to trust their water, which makes the donation of Musk and his foundation so important.

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