Join us in defending clean water in the Sky Islands. Last week, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt announced that he will move forward to repeal the 2015 Waters of the United States Rule, also known as WOTUS or the Clean Water Rule. This announcement opens a 30-day public comment period. Please take action to preserve this important regulation. Send your comments in the form below!
The Clean Water Rule provides vital protections against pollution in rivers, lakes, wetlands, and waterways that feed into nearly 1/3 of America’s drinking water supplies. Clean water is essential to the health of the diverse plants and animals of the Sky Islands. Repealing the Clean Water Rule would put human populations at risk and be a disaster for the environment.
Here in the Southwest, water that flows in small and ephemeral streams is critical to replenishing our aquifers and drinking water. The Rule returned protections to 20 million acres of important isolated wetlands, vernal pools, and tributary streams, identified by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Wetlands Inventory. According to the EPA’s own calculations, as many as 60% of streams in the U.S. would be effected if the Rule is repealed, removing protections for headwaters, ephemeral streams, and creeks that contribute to the drinking water supplies of more than 117 million Americans. The Administration’s effort to repeal the Rule endangers public health.
Small streams and wetlands can have a huge impact on clean water and thriving natural areas. The Rule is grounded in the Clean Water Act and supported by thousands of scientific research papers. According to an EPA press release from the time the Rule was enacted in 2015, “EPA and the Army also utilized the latest science, including a report summarizing more than 1,200 peer-reviewed, published scientific studies which showed that small streams and wetlands play an integral role in the health of larger downstream water bodies.” The Administration’s effort to repeal the Rule disregards science.
The public overwhelmingly supports strong protections for clean water. The Rule was passed following a year-long process with extensive stakeholder input at 400 meetings across the country and more than 1 million public comments. It is supported by conservationists, public health officials, and recreational land users. The Administration’s effort to repeal the Rule ignores resounding public support.
Sky Island Alliance is committed to defending the best science-based protections for our land, wildlife, and human populations. We must stand united against this assault on clean water—our most precious resource. Send your comments to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt today. Comment deadline: August 28, 2017 11:59 PM EST
Take Action! Speak Up for Clean Water!
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