"Our fight isn't over and NPCA will continue to push agencies to replace and improve this rule with one that is legal and supports sound science and common sense." NPCA's Chad Lord
Today the Environmental Protection Agency and Army Corps of Engineers released their proposal to repeal the former 2020 Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule – an important step to restore protections that will make our waterways cleaner for all.
Statement by Chad Lord, Senior Director of Environmental Policy and Climate Change for the National Parks Conservation Association:
“NPCA urged the Biden administration to take this step. We’re thankful for their commitment to protect waterways across the country and undo the damage and pollution the former rule promoted. We all depend on safe water for drinking, swimming, boating, fishing and so much more. And our parks are no different, from the millions of people that visit them, to communities that surround them, to the rare and diverse wildlife that call parks home.
“When it comes to clean water, we must hold our elected officials and agencies charged with protecting our health and environment to the highest standards. Our fight isn’t over and NPCA will continue to push the agencies to replace and improve this rule with one that is legal and supports sound science and common sense. We need more protections for clean water, not less. Our lives depend on it.”
Background: The original WOTUS rule was finalized after years of bipartisan-supported efforts. The rule aimed to end longstanding confusion about which of our nation’s streams, wetlands, lakes and rivers — the source of drinking water for 117 million Americans — are protected under the Clean Water Act. The Environmental Protection Agency and Army Corps of Engineers are going back to the original rule set decades ago and are expected to propose a more protective rule in the next phase of the public process.
The National Park Service oversees thousands of miles of waterways and coasts throughout the country – from trout streams in Yellowstone to wetlands in the Everglades. For more than 20 years, national park visitors have consistently ranked water quality or water access as a top-five most valued attribute when visiting national parks. The Outdoor Industry Association found that consumers spend $887 billion annually on outdoor recreation, with nearly $140 billion on kayaking, rafting, canoeing, scuba diving and other water and recreation activities, all of which takes place in our parks.
About the National Parks Conservation Association: Since 1919, the nonpartisan National Parks Conservation Association has been the leading voice in safeguarding our national parks. NPCA and its nearly 1.6 million members and supporters work together to protect and preserve our nation’s most iconic and inspirational places for future generations. For more information, visit www.npca.org.
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