Pollution on the Rise Due to Clean Water Act Confusion

Uncertainty concerning the Clean Water Act has led to increased pollution across the United States, according to an in-depth New York Times story.

Clean Water Act regulations are limited to "navigable waters," and Supreme Court rulings have created confusion as to where this jurisdiction begins and ends. As a result, US EPA and state regulators are unsure what regulatory actions the courts will uphold.

“We are, in essence, shutting down our Clean Water programs in some states,” Douglas F. Mundrick, an E.P.A. lawyer in Atlanta, told the NY Times. “This is a huge step backward. When companies figure out the cops can’t operate, they start remembering how much cheaper it is to just dump stuff in a nearby creek.”

According to EPA figures, the drinking water for roughly 117 million Americans is drawn from sources that could be excluded from Clean Water Act protection. 

Read the full story at the link below.

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