From Gawker:

Moving Flint away from Detroit’s water seems to have been a fairly uncontroversial choice. The city could not afford the $1.5 million per month it cost to buy it from Detroit. But in between untethering itself from Detroit and the completion of the Lake Huron pipeline, Flint needed to get water from somewhere, and that somewhere ended up being the local Flint River. But that water would turn out to be so corrosive that it stripped lead from the pipes running through the city, raising lead levels in the water far, far above acceptable standards.

As discussed in Episode 0004.

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