On May 27, 2015, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers finalized the Clean Water Rule to protect the streams and wetlands that form the foundation of the nation’s water resources from pollution and degradation.
Water is life… for people, crops, livestock, and wildlife as well as farms, ranches, business and industry. The proposed Clean Water Rule is a crucial step in clearing the regulatory waters and protecting the quality of America’s surface waters, our most vital natural resource.
The EPA and Army Corps of Engineers did as promised. They considered the more than one million comments received on the rule. They addressed concerns and refined and improved the rule. We're encouraged by the clarifications EPA and the Army Corps have undertaken in this process. We're also encouraged to see better Clean Water Act enforcement poised to move forward.
The revised rule ensures that surface water quality is protected under the Clean Water Act through a rule that is grounded in both law and science. Nearly 1 in 3 Americans get drinking water from streams that lacked clear protection before the Clean Water Rule. And healthy ecosystems provide more than drinking water. They provide wildlife habitat and places for fishing, swimming and paddling. Clean water is an economic driver for manufacturing, farming, ranching, tourism, recreation, and energy production.
This rule was shaped and improved by public input. EPA and the Army Corps asked Americans to weigh in on the rule, and over one million of them did so. That process will allow the rule to clear the regulatory waters, overcome the shrill hyperbole from organizations more interested in shilling for industry and industrial agriculture than in clean water, and get about the business of protecting the quality of America’s surface waters.
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