WASHINGTON — The comment period for the Dirty Water Rule closes today, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will begin considering that public input on its replacement for the Clean Water Rule.
In response, Bart Johnsen-Harris, clean water advocate for Environment America, issued the following statement:
“Americans care deeply about protecting clean water and have spoken loud and clear against this proposal to let polluters contaminate our waterways without repercussions. The EPA would be wise to listen to the overwhelming public opposition and withdraw its reckless Dirty Water Rule.
“By leaving vast stream networks and more than half of the nation’s wetlands vulnerable to pollution and degradation, we endanger drinking water sources for millions of Americans and wildlife. From Puget Sound to the Great Lakes, on east to the Chesapeake Bay, we depend on clean water for our health, our ecology and our sense of place. Yet with the Dirty Water Rule, the EPA is proposing the most egregious attack on clean water in the history of the Clean Water Act. Americans know this is wrong. Hundreds of thousands of private citizens have told the EPA to withdraw its rule over the past 60 days.
“Environment America is filing legal comments on behalf of our members explaining why the Dirty Water Rule is not legally defensible. Beyond the rule’s legality, the American people—and sound science—demand that we preserve federal protection for all our waterways. The endangered Clean Water Rule had the backing of more than 1,000 scientific studies and comments from more than one million Americans.”