Salt Lake City, 'Stop the Poop' on our pure Canyons.

Salt Lake City, please stop this environmental injustice.  

Mayor Erin Mendenhall, please remember how great Salt Lake City is,  how it loves pure, daylighted, beautiful creeks. Remember that kindness is the essence of greatness.  Please keep our creeks pure.

Kindly ask SLC Public Utilities to  1) stop the poop by adding 50 toilets to Big Cottonwood and 50 toilets to Little Cottonwood Canyon, 2) stop putting dirty Utah Lake water in pure Big Cottonwood Creek,  Little Cottonwood Creek, and City Creek, and 3) stop drying up the creeks for extra "surplus" water money.

What's the point of daylighting pure creeks back to life then putting dirty Utah Lake water in daylighted creeks choking them to death?

Why does SLC Public Utilities force about 5 billion gallons annually of water to waste from Big Cottonwood Creek in a desert state like Utah?

How is wasting an amount of water equal to the operational capacity of Utah's Deer Creek Reservoir kind or sustainable?   

If it was not ok to degrade Farmington Creek, Parley's Creek, and the American Fork River and kill fish rarely and accidentally, then how is it ok to routinely and not accidentally kill fish in Big Cottonwood Creek for SLC "surplus water" money?

1.7 million visitors and 15 toilets in Big Cottonwood Canyon doesn't flush.  Why is SLC Public Utilities anti-toilets in the canyons? Chlorinated poop in tap water is all the pleasure of drinking poop without the risk of infection.

Dangerous water infected with Anatoxin-a, also known as Very Fast Death Factor (VRDF), and other cynaotoxins should not be put in Salt Lake County's pure eastside creeks running through a lattice work of abandoned ditches through eastside backyards. 

Creeks are living entities with basic rights to be pure, beautiful, and clean.   Natural creeks are not open ditches, sewers, and toilets.  It's un-natural, un-friendly, and un-healthy  for Big Cottonwood Creek to look and smell like the pictures in the photo gallery.  Contact Salt Lake City Mayor's Team 801-535-7704

At the front door, Salt Lake City residents are water shamed into paying high water conservation rates with tall tales of water shortages while SLC Inc. sells billions of gallons of "surplus" water directly and indirectly for $25 million in Weber County, Park City, Heber Valley, Millcreek, Cottonwood Heights, and 4 ski resorts out the back door.  Part of the 'surplus' water game dries up Big Cottonwood Creek and Little Cottonwood Creek to make more "surplus water" money.  Some of our State/County/City water policies need to be obeyed instead of winked at.

Salt Lake City, a truly great city,  grabbed water for 2 million people, but wall to wall cities and the CUP ended their water empire dreams.  SLC's population is 200,000 or 1/10th of their water empire dream creating a huge water hoarding problem.  Water hoarding is the justification for Salt Lake City to control the canyons "to protect the watershed."  "We own all the water."  "We are protecting our water" - that virtually no one drinks and billions of gallons are forced to waste.

 About 99.8% of Big Cottonwood Creek water is never drunk from the tap.  On average 57% of Big Cottonwood Creek water never enters the treatment plant and never will.  Of the 43% that is treated, 75% of that is for lawn water.  So what's the hyperbolic watershed protection story for? Money and power to devalue land to add to SLC's 31,000 acre canyon (50 square miles) land hoard. It appears no toilets have been installed on SLC's 31,000 (50 square miles) by the watershed stewards. 

Why is Salt Lake City Public Utilities (a watershed steward) anti-toilet in our canyons?


Affordable housing advocate Salt Lake City has built no affordable campground sites on its 31,000 acres (50 square miles) for the campless, the  poor, the homeless, and the disenfranchised who can't afford $30 a night to camp.  It appears Salt Lake City has unintentionally created a class of campless people cut out of their own canyons.

A Forest Service grade vaulted toilet installed is about $40,000.  It's canyon politics that has crapped up our canyons. Every 3 years, Salt Lake City spends $1 Billion from city budgets or $2.25 billion if the SLC Enterprise Businesses are included, yet no new canyon toilets. 

Salt Lake County has a $1.5 billion budget, but no new toilets. Mountain Accord ran through $8 million, but no new toilets.  Central Wasatch Commission has ran through $2 million, but no new toilets. 

The politics is that bikers "prefer" to bike back into a wilderness experience, commune with nature, then commute home in the same day so they are against seeing toilets.  A toilet means a road for the septic tank truck to come and empty it.  Bikers don't want to see a poop pumper on their roads so no toilets.  Better to crap up or let the canyon burn down than to have a toilet or fire hydrant needing a road.  It's selfish, short sighted and environmentally unjust. 

SLC Public Utilities gives $150,000 to the County Sheriff Dept, sometimes $37,000 to the Forest Service, and tens of thousands to the Town of Alta for extra watershed patrols instead of 4 new toilets a year.  There is plenty of money.  It should and could be spent more effectively for toilets. 

SLC Public Utilities also has a $1 million armed watershed police force unlike any of the other 566 of 567 Utah's Public Water Providers providing safe drinking water with no armed watershed police.

If that $1 million were re-purposed, SLC could put 25 new toilets in the Wasatch a year.  SLC won't. The watershed police force is not about water quality because 99.8% of Utah's Public Water Providers provide safe drinking water without an armed watershed police. It's un-elected employees inserting their personal likes and dislikes into the city budgets for their own purposes instead of better public purposes like toilets, canyon drinking water, and fire hydrants. 

SLC, kindly stop polluting pure creeks with Utah Lake water.

Big Cottonwood Creek

SLC Council, kindly save our Big Cottonwood Creek.


Utah Lake water is 4 times dirtier than the creek water.  Putting Utah Lake water into a pure creek kills it. 

It appears SLC Public Utilities is treating Big Cottonwood Creek as its private toilet. It flushes thousands of pounds of dead Utah Lake fish (Carp, Cat Fish, Perch), and salty, and unhealthy Utah Lake water infected with blue-green algae cyanotoxins down a natural, pristine creek Public Utilities routinely dries up the creek  to make surplus water money for the enterprise fund. 

A dog named Drake, a black Labrador, died soon after from playing in and lapping Utah Lake cyanotoxic green slime algae water. In 2016, Big Cottonwood Creek tested positive for cyanotoxins with the probable source being SLC's untreated Utah Lake water discharged into the creek SLC routinely dries up. 

Big Cottonwood Creek, Utah

Why does SLC Public Utilities dry up and use Big Cottonwood Creek as a free, open ditch?

Drying up Big Cottonwood Creek kills native fish, and native biota (the flora and fauna of an eco-system).  No one has the right to dry up a river or creek for money let alone extra "surplus water" money.  In the summer, Salt Lake City Public Utilities takes all the water out of the creek causing it to go dry for over a mile while Public Utilities gushes with alternative surplus waters. 

Back in early 1900's SLC began the practice of drying up and using eastside creeks as free ditches full of Utah Lake water to help farmers irrigate 9,000 acres from Big Cottonwood Creek.   137 years later Utah Lake is no longer a healthy water source with wild Trout.  As cities grew farming ended.  Today, it appears 50 acres are irrigated from Big Cottonwood Creek in stark contrast to the historic 9,000 acres ending the need to put Utah Lake water into the creek.   The purpose of the  28 mile Jordan & Salt Lake City Canal running from Draper to South Temple was built in 1882  ended decades ago. This tired and useless canal  still operates today costing Salt Lake City $830,000  while polluting our creeks with Utah Lake water.  It's time to re-purpose the canal, its $830,000 operating budget, and restore our creek watersheds. 

Public Health issues - Anatoxin-a (Very Fast Death Factor) is lethal. As marginally cyanotoxic algae infected Utah Lake water sometimes containing Anatoxin-a spreads through miles of  lattice work of east side ditches in Salt Lake County,  it slows, pools and stagnates  to bloom rapidly in the high summer heat creating multiple  bio-hazards in SLCO eastside backyards in close proximity to pets and people. 

Big Cottonwood Creek, Utah

Call Salt Lake Mayor Erin Mendenhall's Team 801-535-7704. Ask the team to 'Stop the Poop' on our pure canyons.

 Utah Lake water is 4 times dirtier than the creek water.  Putting Utah Lake water into a pure creek kills it.  

Today 98% of the Utah Lake water conveyed in the 137 year old Jordan & Salt Lake City Canal running from Draper to Temple Square has no beneficial use and simply wastes.  SLC Public Utilities  chooses to spend $830,000 annually to despoil our local pristine creeks with Utah Lake water to force the wasting of billions of gallons of water.  It appears so shareholders can not get fair market value where water is needed, enabling the city to buy their shares for pennies on the dollar.  

Why hasn't SLC Public Utilities implemented its 1999 SLC Watershed Management Plan recommendations to retire outdated 114 year old Utah Lake water exchange contracts which would end this environmental injustice artificially manufactured by Salt Lake City Public Utilities?  Director Laura Briefer 801-483-6900

Why hasn't Salt Lake County implemented its own "Watershed Planning and Restoration" plan to end this mess? Mayor Jenny Wilson 385-468-7000

Why does Utah's Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ Water) grant Clean Water Act waivers authorizing Salt Lake City Public Utilities to commit this environment injustice on our natural creeks?

There is no "important or economic or social development" attributable to putting Utah Lake water in Big Cottonwood Creek. Why doesn't DEQ follow DEQ's  R317-2-3 Antidegradation Policy?

Director Erica Gaddis 801-536-4300

Governor Gary Herbert, please save Big Cottonwood Creek, Little Cottonwood Creek, and Canyon Tourist Dollars.  801-538-1000

Lt. Governor Spencer Cox, please stop the poop on our Silicon Slopes.                801-538-1048

Department of Natural Resources Executive Director Brian Steed, please support saving Big Cottonwood Creek by encouraging the re-purposing the Jordan & Salt Lake City Canal running 98% of its water to waste and polluting our clean creeks. 801-538-7201

Utah State Water Engineer Boyd Clayton, please support saving Big Cottonwood Creek by encouraging the re-purposing the Jordan & Salt Lake Canal wasting 98% of its public  water and polluting the creeks. Utah Code  73-2-1(6)(b) authorizes  the State Water Engineer to "(b) prevent theft, waste, loss, or pollution of those waters"  801-538-7240

Central Utah Water Conservation District General Manager Gene Shawcroft, save Big Cottonwood Creek and Little Cottonwood Creek by encouraging Salt Lake City to support the 2007 "Utah Lake Level Fluctuation Study" to "Increase the volume of rights that are held in the Lake." (page 19)  801-226-7100

Utah Lake Commission Director Eric Millis, would you encourage Salt Lake City to re-purpose its 137 year old Jordan & Salt Lake City Canal to increase water levels in Utah Lake to improve Utah Lake's water quality?  801-851-2900

E.coli, Salt, & Cyanotoxins in Big Cottonwood Creek

E.coli in Big Cottonwood Creek, Utah


 Who gives a crap about our crapped up creeks and canyons?


For years SLC Public Utilities has tracked e.coli contamination in Big Cottonwood Creek from 'Big Turd Canyon' as high as 2,419.6 MPN/100ml (40 times the safe level of E.coli in a swimming lake). E.coli standards for treated drinking water is zero and lake water for swimming 60. No DNA testing has occurred to determine whether the source is human, dog, or wildlife.  It's unlikely wildlife are congregating at trail heads causing these high e.coil levels.   The e.coli in Big Cottonwood Creek appears to be from humans due to 14 toilets in a 50 square mile canyon with 1.7 million visitors canyon (3 million visitors estimated by 2040)  where 60 toilets are needed according to a U of U engineering student study. 

14 toilets in 50 square miles for 1.7 million annual visitors in Big Cottonwood Canyon is a 'fecal time bomb.' Just 1 in 10 visitors pooping on the mountain dumps 1 million pounds of poop in Big Cottonwood Canyon over 20 years.

For years, SLC  has warned the public that it takes minutes for a drop of canyon water to enter its treatment plant.  Yet, it appears SLC delivers this e.coli contaminated water to irrigate eastside vegetable gardens.

Salt in Big Cottonwood Creek, Utah


There is one ton of salt  in one acre-foot (325,851 gallons) of Utah Lake water at 735 TDS.*  Salt Lake City puts Utah Lake water near 1,200 TDS (1.6 tons of salt per acre-foot).

At 5,000 acre-feet of Utah Lake water put into Big Cottonwood Creek, that's about 8,000 tons of salt a year put into Big Cottonwood Creek.

*Utah Lake Water Level Fluctuation Study" 2007 CUP

Blue Green Algae in Big Cottonwood Creek, Utah

Blue-Green Algae Cynaotoxins - anatoxin-a, also known as Very Fast Death Factor (VFDF)

"Among cyanotoxins are some of the most powerful natural poisons known, including poisons which can cause rapid death by respiratory failure.  The toxins include potent neurotoxins, hepatoxins, cytotoxins, and endotoxins."

"Exposure to the cyanobacteria neurotoxin BMAA may be an envirnmetnal cause of neurodegenerative diseases such as ALS, Parkinson's Disease and Alzheimer's Disease."

"There is also an interest in the military potential of biological neurotoxins such as cyanotoxins which "have gained increasing significance as potential candidates for weaponization." wikipeida

Anatoxin-a, saxitoxin, cyldrospermins (cyanobacteria)  are bio-hazards in water sources put in our creeks for good reason.  Not detected does not mean not present. 

Algae Crisis


Dead fish from toxic algae poisoning enter the food chain poisoning birds and other wildlife.

"Algal toxins poison 60,000 people around the world every year."

Blob-like Toxic Algae Overtakes Utah Lake

 With virtually no irrigation occurring from the Jordan & Salt Lake City Canal carrying Utah Lake water into Big Cottonwood Creek and Little Cottonwood Creek, it's time to re-purpose the canal and stop putting Utah Lake water in the eastside creeks of Salt Lake County.  

What Makes Blue-Green Algae Dangerous? Speaking of Chemistry

Never has Big Cottonwood Creek ever had a toxic algal bloom infection except for the fact of Salt Lake City drying up the creek and putting dirty Utah Lake water into a clean creek. 

Blue-green algae linked to dog deaths

 "Pet owners are keeping their dogs away from the water in News Brunswick, as three dogs in the Fredericton area recently died after coming into contact with blue-green algae, a toxic bloom that can also be harmful to humans. " CBC News 

Watch your step for human poop in Big Turd Canyon.

1 million pounds pooped on Utah's Big Cottonwood Canyon every 20 years.

Stop the Poop on Big Cottonwood Canyon, Utah

1.7 million visitors to Big Cottonwood Canyon annually. If 1 in 10 uses the mountain as a toilet, over 20 years, that 1 million pounds of human poop on Big Cottonwood Canyon. With 3 million visitors by 2040, that's 100,000 pounds of human poop on the canyon watershed every year.

E.coli contamination in Utah's Big Cottonwood Canyon is a clear and stinky danger.

Wasatch Canyon toilets

When mother nature calls, hikers and bikers poop on the mountain.

Welcome to Utah's Wasatch Bathroom

Big Cottonwood Canyon toilet

When Utah invites millions to its canyons without providing sufficient sanitary toilets, drinking water, and parking our natural resources are despoiled and   Utah's reputation soiled.

Pooping off trail is a policy failure.

Fecal time bomb Big Cottonwood Canyon

Out of sight - Out of mind is a policy failure.

Why is there human poop in our creeks?

Holding is a Utah policy failure.

Fecal time bomb

Going to the bathroom is a natural function of life.

 Why do our Wasatch canyons chronically lack toilets, drinking water, and fire hydrants?

Utah Wasatch Poop Hive

Welcome to Utah's Poop Hive

15 toilets for 1.7 million visitors in a 50 square mile Big Cottonwood Canyon doesn't flush.

Nothing ruins a hike like seeing or stepping in human poop.  

SLC spends $1.4 million to buy Donut Falls, installs no toilets, no drinking water, no parking and invites the world to Donut Falls.  Then the Donut Falls tourists are predatory parking ticketed for cash.

Creek Irrigated land dropped from 9,000 to 50 acres

Why is Salt Lake City spending $830,000 a year to operate the Jordan & Salt Lake City Canal running 98% of its water to waste and  polluting our creeks?

Historic irrigation from Big Cottonwood Creek peaked at 9,000 acres dropping to about 50 acres today.  Get Utah Lake water out of Big Cottonwood Creek.

20 years ago, Salt Lake City Watershed Management Plan Final Draft March, 1999 recommended eliminate Utah Lake water exchange contacts. (See pdf below)

"Jordan River and Canals Algal Bloom Monitoring 2019 Update August 1, 2019.  Lab results from samples collected by the Salt Lake County Health Department (SLCHD) at Jordan Narrows, Blackridge Reservoir, and Wheeler Farm on July 30, 2019, showed anatoxin-a at all sampling locations.   Any detection of anatoxin-a exceeds the recreation exceeds the recreation health-based threshold for a Warning Advisory." Utah DEQ

"Anatoxin-a, also known as Very Fast Death Factor (VFDF), is a secondary, bicylic alkaloid and cyanotoxin with acute neurotoxicity." "Symptoms of anatoxin exposure include loss of coordination, muscular fasciculations, convulsions and death by respiratory paralysis.  Its mode of action is through the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAchR) where it mimics the binding of the receptor's natural ligand, acetylcholine."  "Due to its high toxicity and potential presence in drinking water, anatoxin-a poses a threat to animals, including humans." WikipediA August 9, 2019 

What is the reason SLC Public Utilities spends $830,00 a year to operate the Jordan & Salt Lake City canal putting  water infected with Anatoxin-a, salt, and dead fish into Big Cottonwood Creek for irrigating land when irrigation from the creek has virtually stopped?

2015 - 2018 E.coli data from Big Cottonwood Creek -

"Rivers are the lifeblood of our civilization, we therefore need to carefully analyze the consequences of our actions to maintain ecologically sound riparian communities." USDA FS Big Cottonwood Creek Stream Survey Report Nov 2000

E-coli data 2015 to 2018 Big Cottonwood Canyon from SLC Public Utilties (pdf)


[Utah] Payson Lakes under algal bloom warning after young girl falls Sept 4, 2019 (pdf)


Big Cottonwood Creek Stream Survey Report Forest Service Nov 2000 (pdf)


Notice of Violaton of SLC fish kills in Parley's Creek Jan 21, 2000 (pdf)


SLC Grama Sept 12, 2019 - No Fish Kill Authority (pdf)


Salt Lake County Stream Care Guide 2015 (pdf)


EPA compliance letter to California - piles of human feces Sept 2019t (pdf)


Toxic ‘Forever Chemicals’ Detected in Drinking Water Supplies Across California EWG (pdf)


Report - 74 California water systems contaminated with PSAS 'forever chemicals' Sep 26 2019 (pdf)


How the algae bloom outbreak became an alarming health threat - Deseret News (pdf)


Daylighting Streams - Breathing Life into Urban Streams and Communities (pdf)


Daylighting (streams) - Wikipedia (pdf)


3 million visitors, 14 toilets, 2040 Big Cottonwood Canyon

"Steve Bartlett, the students' instructor and an associate professor in civil engineering, said the study points out a startling comparison between Yellowstone National Park and the projected visitation of 3 million people to Big Cottonwood Canyon by 2040.

The canyon, at an estimated  32,000 acres, will host 75 percent of the visitors Yellowstone receives (4.4 million) in a geographic footprint that is 1 percent of Yellowstone's size."  Desnews April 21, 2017 U. engineering study recommends variable toll for Big Cottonwood Canyon 

3 million visitors to Big Cottonwood Canyon by 2040 (pdf)


Utah Lake now under shore-to-shore warning for toxic algal blooms - Deseret News Sept 2019 (pdf)


More than 100,000 cancer cases could be caused by contaminants in tap water Sept 2019 (pdf)


Old power lines in Big Cottonwood Canyon are a fire hazard

Old power lines cause forest fires

Over protecting Big Cottonwood Canyon, Utah

The Paradise California Wildfires were started from over protected forests and old power lines.

Wildfires kill

Wildfires a danger in Big Cottonwood Canyon, Utah

Why do we lack fire hydrants in Big Cottonwood Canyon to protect watershed, property and life? 

Fire hydrants save lives

Big Cottonwood Canyon, Utah

Fire hydrants are a must for watershed protection.

Big Cottonwood Canyon, Utah lacks fire hydrants

Why is SLC Public Utilities against modern fire flows and hydrants in Big Cottonwood Canyon? 

Big Cottonwood Canyon is not safe.

Over protecting Big Cottonwood Canyon, Utah

Today we invite 1.7 million visitors a year into Big Cottonwood Canyon and tomorrow 3 million visitors.  They should be safe.  Big Cottonwood Canyon lacking fire flows and hydrants is not safe. 

Fire destroys watershed, property, and life.

Over protecting Big Cottonwood Canyon, Utah

Why isn't there adequate fire flow protection for Brighton City in Big Cottonwood Canyon?

Microplastics tire/paint dust, synthetic fibers, microbeads

6 tons of tire dust in Big Cottonwood Canyon annually

Tire dust, microplastics in Big Cottonwood Creek, Utah

Utah's 31.7 billion vehicle miles generates 16 million pounds of toxic tire dust going in our watersheds.

Paint dust in drinking water

Microplastics in Big Cottonwood Creek, Utah

Paint dust is one of the microplastics founds in drinking water sources.

Synthetic clothes fibers in drinking water


Washing and drying synthetic clothes puts synthetic fibers in the watershed.

Microbeads in tooth paste, finger nail polish, and soap

Microplastics in Utah's drinking water

The U.K. has banned microbeads.

1/4 of California fish tested positive for plastic

microplastic in Utah fish

"One quarter of the fish sampled from fish markets in California and Indonesia contained plastic pieces and fibers in their guts."

Microbeads - A plastic disaster

plastic in fish

There is no free lunch.  

Utah's strange water ways

Why is it illegal to drink rain barrel water (distilled water) in Utah?

Can you name any other state or country in the world where drinking rain barrel water is illegal other than Utah?

Can you name the Utah town with 21 houses without water meters?  Alta, Utah.

Have you ever owned, rented or seen a house without a water meter in Utah?

Why do  Utah trees, bushes, or weeds have more rights than person in Utah?

Why does Utah claim it wants take control of federal lands,  yet gives control of Utah's water to the federal gov't?

Why haven't Utah's Domestic and Irrigation water regulations  been updated since 1985?

Why does Utah spend $90,000 a day of state tax money on water paperwork instead of using that money to develop more water like new reservoirs ?  We can't drink dry water paperwork.

Why doesn't Utah collect meaningful data from the one million water meters in Utah?

Why doesn't  the Division of Water Rights collect water leakage data from cities leaking billions of gallons from water mains?  The average city leaks 14% of its water from its water mains.

Why does one Utah farmer get 25% more water than another farmer with identical farms - identical crop, identical soil conditions, same elevation, and identical number of freeze days?

Why has Utah and Nevada are fighting and have fought for years over mining ground water at the border instead of finding a conservation solution to save more water than is in dispute?

Why do State water officials allow cities to double charge home builders for water, yet badger home builders about "affordable housing"?

How can a city can take over a water company, install its city employees to the company board, and buy out shareholders at $110 an an acre-foot (1/3 million gallons) for local clean water while it paid $5,800 for distant, dirtier water?

How can a city speculate and monopolize a basic commodity like water to dry up and buy up 50 square miles of land outside its city limits? 

Why can't Public Food Providers (farmers) who spend money to save water use the saved water to expand and offset water conservation projects, but Public Water Providers can?

Why does Utah leak 15 Deer Creeks from city water mains and canals enough for 4 million new people?

Why has the State allowed water monopoly to the point where a water connection can sell for $225,000 instead of the typical $5,000?