On April 15, EPA announced that it would not protect surface waters contaminated with pollution that first moves through groundwater.
EPA and states have required permits for this type of pollution for decades and it’s reckless to reverse course now. It makes no sense for the Clean Water Act to cover pollution dumped from a pipe into a river, but not pollution that flows through groundwater into that same river.
This decision is a handout to heavy polluting industries and will create a dangerous new loophole in the Clean Water Act. EPA must continue to hold industries accountable for dumping chemicals and other pollutants into groundwater that contaminates our nation’s rivers, lakes, and bays.
The agency has protected our nation’s waters from this type of pollution for decades, because previous administrations understood that it doesn’t make sense for the Clean Water Act to cover pollution dumped from a pipe into a river, but not pollution that flows through groundwater into that same river.
EPA should immediately withdraw its pro-polluter scheme that would allow industries to launder their dangerous pollution through groundwater in order to avoid getting a permit.
The EPA is taking comments on this reckless scheme until June 7, 2019. Visit regulations.gov to comment.