Supreme Court Hears Clean Water Act Loophole Case

Supreme Court Hears Clean Water Act Loophole Case

Yesterday the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a case about whether the Clean Water Act requires a permit for pollution from “point sources” — pipes and drainage ditches — that flows into a river or the ocean via another medium like groundwater or a wetland that is not covered by the statute. 

Why This Matters:  The stakes are high for both sides. The water treatment plant argues that it did not discharge directly into a navigable water — the ocean or a river — so it can’t be held responsible under the Act — a technicality, but one that they say protects many facilities like theirs from the high cost of treating discharges like these, as well as excusing homeowners whose septic tanks might leak.  Environmental groups on the other side say that if a polluter is allowed to discharge into another medium like groundwater and the pollution then ends up in a navigable water, it will create a huge loophole in the Act.

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Newark Fast Tracks Lead Pipe Replacement

Newark Fast Tracks Lead Pipe Replacement

We wrote the other week about Newark’s ongoing water crisis and the city’s plan to distribute bottled water to residents after water filters that were previously made available to the public lacked the ability to filter out lead. Now New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy and Newark Mayor Ras Baraka announced a new $120 million plan yesterday to fast-track […]

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Newark Offers Bottled Water to Address Water Crisis, Residents Grow Weary

Newark Offers Bottled Water to Address Water Crisis, Residents Grow Weary

After it was determined that the 40,000 filters Newark city officials gave out to residents to address the ongoing water crisis weren’t actually filtering out lead, the city decided to begin distributing bottled water. In a startling echo of Flint, residents of Newark have been kept in the dark about the safety of their drinking […]

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Clean Water Emerging as A Top Tier Campaign Issue

Clean Water Emerging as A Top Tier Campaign Issue

Last week, Senators Kamala Harris and Kirsten Gillibrand made safe drinking water a key environmental plank in their campaigns. 

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When it comes to environmental policy, it’s hardly “America First.” In fact, according to Yale University’s environmental performance ranking, it’s America 27th, compared with other nations. Despite this inconvenient truth, President Trump this week boasted of his team’s hard work to ensure our country has “crystal-clean” water and air. The sham event had to be moved indoors thanks to epic storms and flooding in Washington. Good thing — otherwise lightning might have struck him for all his lies.

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Trump Administration Continues to Undermine U.S. Climate Progress

Trump Administration Continues to Undermine U.S. Climate Progress

In a series of actions over the last two weeks, the Trump Administration continues to reverse U.S. government rules and programs that had been contributing to U.S. progress on the climate crisis.  In addition to the rule they proposed that benefits coal power plants by allowing them more flexibility with air pollution, the Agriculture Department “buried” studies by USDA scientists on the negative impacts of climate change, proposed that environmental reviews of federal projects no longer include estimates of greenhouse gas emissions caused by projects, increased categorical exclusions of environmental reviews for projects like logging on federal lands, and rebuffed all efforts by the state of California to reach an agreement on the clean car rule rollback.  

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