Environmental Issues: Water

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Cleaning Up the Anacostia River
After more than a century of abuse, plans are being made to bring Washington, D.C.'s Anacostia River back to life.

Overview
After more than a century of abuse, plans are being made to bring Washington, D.C.'s "Forgotten River" back to life.
Re-Envisioning the Chicago River
Adopting Comprehensive Regional Solutions to the Invasive Species Crisis

Fact Sheet
In response to a public health emergency more than 100 years ago, engineers reversed the Chicago River and built the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal to carry wastewater away from Lake Michigan, the city’s source of drinking water. The canal also provides a shipping link between the Mississippi River and the Great Lakes, opening navigation not only to recreational boats and commercial barges, but also to invasive species, and it diverts massive amounts of water from Lake Michigan. The unfolding Asian carp crisis reveals more than just the challenges faced by local, state, and federal agencies in stopping invasive species from entering the Great Lakes. It also exposes critical infrastructure deficiencies in the region’s wastewater, stormwater, and transportation systems.
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Clearing the Waters
From the Chesapeake to California, NRDC is fighting to restore America’s threatened waterways

Overview
The United States has made significant progress cleaning up the nation's waterways since Congress passed the Clean Water Act in 1972, but much more remains to be done. Although some of the most obvious signs of contamination have disappeared, other sources of pollution persist, and water resources are frequently overtaxed, particularly in the West.
Missing Protection
Polluting the Mississippi River Basin's Small Streams and Wetlands

Report
Our nation's rivers, streams, and small bodies of water are in danger because of recent interpretations of the Clean Water Act that suggest that many waters historically protected from pollution can now be polluted or destroyed without a permitting process to limit the environmental impact of discharges into the waters. This October 2008 issue paper discusses the changes in relation to the problem of nutrient pollution in the Mississippi River Basin.

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