Senate Proposal Would Block Clean Water Protections
WASHINGTON (April 30, 2015) -- A dozen senators led by John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) today introduced a bill to block the Clean Water Rule, an Obama Administration initiative to protect millions of acres of wetlands and thousands of streams that feed into the drinking water systems of 117 million Americans. More than 800,000 positive comments have been submitted on the proposed rule, dwarfing the polluter-led opposition to it.
The following is a statement by Jon Devine, a senior attorney in the water program at the Natural Resources Defense Council.
“These precious bodies of water filter pollution, prevent flooding, feed prized fishing grounds and help supply the drinking water systems of one in three Americans. Such critical resources need more protection -- not less.
“The bill also passes judgment on the Clean Water Rule prematurely: The Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have not even issued a final rule to protect such waterways and have publicly committed to address the more than one million public comments on the proposal. The final rule is expected before summer.
“And it's high time to clarify which water bodies are entitled to pollution protection under Clean Water Act. It's time to protect all our rivers, streams and wetlands.”