Clean Water Act

Four decades ago, national leaders talked about our duty and responsibility to cut water pollution–and about its costs.

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Sometime this week, the House of Representatives will consider H.R. 3409, which its sponsor, an Ohio Republican, has dubbed the Stop the War on Coal Act of 2012. The bill would prevent the Interior Department from issuing regulations until December 2013 that might cut jobs in the coal sector or restrict the industry’s access to […]

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Officials from states in the upper Missouri River basin are upset with an Army Corps of Engineers proposal to charge the states for the storage and use of ‘surplus’ water in six reservoirs on the nation’s longest river. South Dakota’s attorney general said he would challenge the plan in court, if it is enacted, while […]

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Sewage is discharged in the Cuyahoga River near Cleveland, Ohio in this 1973 photograph. The Clean Water Act, passed a year earlier, has improved water quality in many water bodies, but some communities still struggle to control water pollution from combined sewer systems.

Local government officials and utility leaders ask U.S. Congress to invest in water projects and to provide regulatory flexibility. The framework is part of a broader debate about how to balance ecosystems, public health and financial constraints, in this, the 40th year of the Clean Water Act.

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New EPA Guidance for Combined Sewers Draws Mixed Reviews

Seattle will be the first city to test the new integrated framework.

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Regulatory measures The Clean Water Act has largely fallen short in the Pacific Northwest and much of the nation, according to a new investigation by EarthFix and InvestigateWest. A pump replacement program in Islamabad will augment the city’s water supply and save enough electricity to power 4,500 Pakistani households, Bloomberg reported. Some restaurant owners in Vienna are […]

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The U.S. House Agriculture Committee published a draft version of the 2012 Farm Bill, which is estimated to save US$35 billion over 10 years. The committee will discuss the 557-page piece of legislation on July 11 (find the committee’s summary here). In the draft, grants for rural water and wastewater projects are cut in half, […]

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U.S. House Appropriations Committee

Funds for water infrastructure are slashed.

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The Guardian explores how Costa Rica has implemented a green economy, which places a monetary value on ecosystem services, to protect resources like forests and water. Officials in Mumbai have warned that water rationing will likely occur after July 15 due to dwindling water supplies in India’s most populous city, The Times of India reported. […]

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The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee approved a bill that would limit the scope of the Clean Water Act to guidelines written by the Bush administration in 2007. Bloomberg BNA reports that a House floor vote should happen soon. The House Appropriations Committee also included language to block the new guidance in a water and […]

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The state of Arizona has filed a lawsuit against the U.S. section of the agency that administers water treaties between the U.S. and Mexico, according to Nogales International. The lawsuit claims that the U.S. International Boundary and Water Commission is violating the Clean Water Act by allowing untreated industrial wastewater to flow from Mexico into […]

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Infographic: Wild Rice

A Minnesota District Court has ruled in favor of protecting the state’s wild rice.

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On Wednesday, the House Committee on Appropriations has approved the fiscal year 2013 spending bill for water and energy development. The committee allocated US$32.1 billion—US$965 million less than President Obama’s request—to the Department of Energy, the Army Corps of Engineers, segments of the Interior Department and several independent agencies. A day earlier, a Senate Appropriations […]

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Clean Water Act Interpretation The Obama administration is mulling regulatory guidance for the Clean Water Act that would reinstate language that was proposed by the George W. Bush administration, but was stymied by opposition from industry groups. Greenwire reports that the new guidance would make a broader claim as to which wetlands and small streams […]

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Build Them Faster Continuing his mission of cutting red tape and making federal review processes leaner, President Obama signed an executive order to speed the pace of approval for infrastructure projects. The order establishes a committee comprised of cabinet-level departments, which will submit a plan for a streamlined, coordinated review process for water, energy, transportation […]

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The opening of the Morganza spillway resulted almost immediately in the flooding of farmland located within the floodway. Flooding of farmland caked in fertilizer is a threat to the Gulf of Mexico because it could increase the size of the dead-zone.

As the impact of agriculture on water quality intensifies around the globe, two lawsuits in the United States aim to reduce the size of the Gulf of Mexico’s ‘dead zone’ by setting limits on nutrient pollution in the Mississippi River Basin.

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Restoring Abundance At a House hearing on the 2013 budget requests for several of the nation’s water and power agencies, California Republican Tom McClintock said the central objective of the House water and energy policy was to “restore abundance”—unlike the Obama administration, which, he claims, is trying to encourage and threaten Americans into using less […]

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On World Water Day, we look at: Water Innovation Hindustan Times features examples of grassroots water innovation in India. With 1.2 billion people, India is teeming with innovators and places to try out ingenious ideas in energy, water, banking, and health care, according to Fast Company. What makes a country ideal for innovation? Israel could […]

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Hundreds of billions of dollars are needed for renovation and improvement. But what projects will be chosen, and who will pay?

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Peer Reviewers for Fracking Study The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is accepting nominations for qualified scientists to review its draft study of groundwater contamination in a Wyoming town. The draft, released in December, found compounds that are associated with natural-gas drilling processes in two monitoring wells. To nominate someone, send the person’s name, address […]

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