Rough Waters Ahead

The impact of the Trump administration's proposed FY18 EPA budget cuts on the Delaware River Basin

A REPORT BY ENVIRONMENT AMERICA RESEARCH & POLICY CENTER AND FRONTIER GROUP
Download the report to learn more.
The Delaware River Basin is critical to the health and welfare of our families, communities and wildlife. It’s also a drinking water source for more than 15 million people.

But if President Trump’s proposal to cut the Environmental Protection Agency’s budget by nearly one-quarter is approved, the programs that keep the Delaware River Basin healthy would be at risk.

NOTE: This report analyzed the Trump administration's proposed budget for FY18; unfortunately, the administration is now proposing similarly severe cuts to clean water programs in FY19.

The Delaware River Basin deserves our protection

The Delaware River provides water for 15 million Americans and a home for more than 200 fish species. But for centuries, waterways in the Delaware River Basin served as a dumping ground for pollution, which caused disease and harmed wildlife. Residents and local decision-makers have attempted to clean up and protect the basin without much success.

The creation of the EPA in 1970 established enforcement authority and new tools and funding sources to support restoration of waterways across the country, including the Delaware River. The EPA has worked to restore the Delaware River to health by restoring its waterways, holding polluters accountable, and studying and monitoring the Delaware River Basin to ensure its future health.

The health of the Delaware River Basin depends on a strong EPA

Today, much of the Delaware River is clean enough for fishing and swimming. But it wasn’t always that way. In the 1950s, the urban portion of the Delaware River was one of the most polluted stretches of river in the world. It took the dedicated work of the EPA, along with local and state governments, to turn the tide and begin restoring the Delaware to health.

But the job of cleaning up and protecting the river basin is not done. Continuing pollution from sewer systems, industrial facilities and runoff calls for continued vigilance and action. We need a well-funded EPA to continue cleaning up the Delaware River Basin and ensure that its streams and rivers are healthy and safe for us and future generations to enjoy.

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