More U.S. Waterways to be Protected by the Clean Water Act

Long-Awaited Obama Administration Action Will Safeguard Drinking Water Supplies and Other Critical Waters

WASHINGTON (April 27, 2011) -- The Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers took an important step today to further ensure the nation’s waterways are kept clean, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council.

New guidelines proposed by the agencies today will clarify whether the Clean Water Act’s pollution prevention requirements apply to many streams, wetlands and ponds.  For more than 10 years, many of these waters have been in legal limbo, including waters that help supply drinking water.

The following is a statement from Jon Devine, senior attorney in the Water Program at the Natural Resources Defense Council:

“EPA and the Army Corps deserve our thanks today. Even very small streams and wetlands can contribute to our drinking water, filter pollution, and absorb flood waters.  If finalized, the new guidelines will better protect more of our critical waters, and better protect Americans’ health in the process.  To finish the job, the administration needs to develop a rule that will solidify these safeguards for the long term.”