The EPA’s Latest Attacks on Clean Water Protections

Clean water is one of Earth’s most precious resources; go figure that Trump’s EPA is preparing to strip away a bunch of existing rules under the Clean Water Act, per a proposal it introduced this week.

The most substantial and consequential change is what type of waterways the EPA would classify as worthy of protection. Major waterways and their tributaries would still qualify under the guidelines, but wetlands and streams that flow into major waterways on a non-permanent, seasonable basis (generally dictated by rainfall) would get excluded. Altogether, we’re talking about deregulating thousands of miles of streams and millions of acres of wetlands.

Tell the EPA: Don’t touch Clean Water Act protections!

Previously, the Obama administration saw fit to include these because, as its research concluded, about 117 million Americans (roughly one-third) obtain water from these sources. Just because these bodies of water don’t permanently flow into water sources doesn’t mean they can’t do damage to drinking water during the periods in which they do!

Nevertheless, the new EPA says it would like to give more power to states and property owners to determine how to care for resources, and better enable them to make choices that “grow local economies.” You know: if there’s money to be made by polluting water, then by all means – get that cash!

By making this change, the Trump administration will be catering to the golf courses and real estate developers (two industries the president personally invests in) who tend to be most guilty of polluting smaller waterways. Farmers and rural dwellers (coincidentally, Donald Trump’s voter base) are also culpable for pollution via pesticides and livestock excrement.

All of these parties would have an easier time conducting business without environmental concerns moving forward – not just in terms of polluting more freely, but also being able to pave over/build on top of these waterways.

True to form, the EPA has already been caught lying about its new proposal. The agency told reporters that no research existed on how many waterways would lose protection, but a document previously released through a Freedom of Information Act request shows that in 2017 the EPA did in fact study that very subject and found that 13 percent of streams and 51 percent of wetlands would be deregulated under this plan.

President Trump has been a kick recently insisting that environmental action is not necessary because our air and water are “right now at a record clean” [sic.] That assertion is highly debatable, but any improvements this country has made toward cleaning up our air and water are the results of federal regulations and oversight – the very things Trump is aiming to eliminate.

Take Action

The good news is that this potentially devastating ecological policy change isn’t a done deal. Environmental groups are already pledging to sue to maintain the existing water standards in the United States.

More immediately, the Trump administration must hear public comments on amending the Clean Water Act for the next two months before it can implement any changes. Now is the time for us to express our strong disapproval. Help protect our water by signing this urgent Care2 petition.

33 comments

heather g
heather gabout a month ago

Better cast a more sensible vote next time...

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Roxana S
Roxana Sabout a month ago

TYFS

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Shae Lee
Shae Leeabout a month ago

Thanks for sharing.

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Marija M
Marija Mabout a month ago

OMG...

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Paul Carter
Paul Carterabout a month ago

Will you all stop whinging, don't you realize that by demanding drinkable water and breathable air you are potentially depriving some deserving rich people, like Trump, of much needed extra profit. Sorry my sarcasm app just kicked in.

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Lorraine Andersen
Lorraine Aabout a month ago

Dosen't EPA man they are supposed to be PROTECTING our environment??? Maybe we should rename then to the Environment POISONING agency? what happens when there is no more clean water to drink?? I guess Trump thinks he has enough money to always buy what he needs and rest of us and the wildlife can just suffer.

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hELEN hEARFIELD
hELEN hEARFIELDabout a month ago

tyfs

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Toni W
Toni Wabout a month ago

TYFS

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Toni W
Toni Wabout a month ago

TYFS

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Debbi W
Debbi Wabout a month ago

Since the trump and scott pruitt don't want clean water, I suggest they be the first to have access to the water. After drinking and bathing in it for at least a year could they prove it safe.

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