Protect America's Water

  • by: Sierra Club
  • target: EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy
Over 40 years ago, two-thirds of America's lakes, rivers and coastal waters were unsafe for fishing and swimming. Because of the Clean Water Act, that number has been cut in half. However, one-third of the nation’s waters are still in trouble.

Last month, the Obama administration proposed a new rule to clarify which wetlands and streams in the U.S. are covered under the Clean Water Act.

This proposal will finally restore protections, as originally intended, to almost all of the nation's fresh waters — ensuring safe drinking water for 117 million Americans.

This is great news, but some polluters are actively working to stop the restoration of our nation's clean water protections.

Send a message to the EPA in support of their proposal to protect America's streams and wetlands from dangerous pollution!
Thank you for your effort to clarify which waters of the United States are protected under the Clean Water Act and for restoring a common sense approach to protecting our nation's lakes, rivers, and streams. Clean water is an undeniable necessity for the health of our families, our environment, and our economy-- not to mention our enjoyment. And as your agencies have recognized with this rule, ensuring the protection of bodies of water upstream is vital to keeping pollution out of our waters downstream.

I strongly support the effort of the Environmental Protection Agency and Army Corps of Engineers and urge them to finalize a rule that is protective of all streams and wetlands -- including wetlands outside of floodplains -- that directly influence the physical, chemical and biological integrity of the nation's rivers, lakes and bays.

For the past decade, there has been confusion over which streams and wetlands are covered by the Clean Water Act because of polluter-friendly court decisions and subsequent Bush administration policies. This confusion has put the drinking water of over 117 million people at risk. One in three Americans relies on public drinking water supplies that are fed by polluted headwater or seasonally-flowing streams.

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To protect Americans' drinking water, health, and recreation opportunities, we must protect all of America's wetlands and waterways. Today's rule will help make that possible. I applaud the efforts of the EPA and USACE and urge them to finalize a strong rule as quickly as possible.

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