Proposed Budget Would Increase Water Pollution

By Jon Devine, Senior Attorney, Water Program, NRDC Originally published here President Trump announced his proposed budget on Thursday. If it were to be adopted by Congress, it would threaten public health and our natural resources enormously. Although this budget is so radical that it has no chance of enactment, it still bears close examination for a couple reasons. First, it provides a window into the values that the Trump administration holds (or, based on this document, lacks). Second, we need to be on guard for attempts to cast the president’s budget as the starting point for discussing the ultimate funding levels, such that Congress seems reasonable by providing more funding than the president would for environmental programs, but cutting them below already-insufficient current levels. This post examines President Trump’s budget with respect to water programs. I’m sorry to report that it is an unmitigated disaster. It’s no exaggeration to say the administration has declared war on clean water, when one looks at this budget combined with the administration’s rollback of water rules protecting communities from coal mining and its initiation of a scheme to weaken safeguards for a variety of critical water bodies, including streams that feed the drinking water supplies of one in three Americans. Water Infrastructure Funding: Not What Administration Wants You to Think Let’s start with the least bad news, as the Trump administration has touted the budget’s alleged “robust funding for critical drinking and wastewater infrastructure.” It is true that the levels that this proposal suggests for EPA’s clean water and safe drinking water infrastructure funds are roughly the same as in recent years.But...

What They are Saying: Environmental, Conservation, and Public Health Groups on President Trump’s Budget Outline

Clean Water Action on the President’s Billionaires Budget Washington, DC – Today President Trump released the details of his budget outline. Clean Water Action President and CEO Bob Wendelgass released the following statement. “This is a reckless and dangerous budget. It’s also completely unsurprising. President Trump has made his priorities perfectly clear – he will put polluters first at all costs. The massive cut to the Environmental Protection Agency’s budget would devastate protections for drinking water and public health. It not only undermines EPA’s ability to carry out our laws, but any reduction in EPA’s financial support to the states would have a huge impact on states’ ability to safeguard our families and stop pollution. ” “It’s fitting this travesty was released on the first day of March Madness  – it is the opposite of everything  Americans want. Poll after poll shows that Americans expect their elected officials to do more, not less to protect clean water and clean air.” “This budget is so outrageous that even Republicans in Congress are skeptical. These are the same Republicans who have been strangling EPA’s budget for years. While we are likely to see a big cuts to EPA, because Republicans are committed to putting corporate profits before public health, the President’s proposal most likely doesn’t have a chance in Congress.” ___________________________________________ President’s Budget Puts Clean Water and Rivers at Risk Nationwide (American Rivers) Washington — President Trump’s proposed budget cuts to clean drinking water and river restoration efforts would cause serious harm to the nation’s health, economy, and quality of life, American Rivers said today. The President’s budget proposal includes deep...