Protect Our Streams and Wetlands from Corporate Pollution

Target: U.S. House of Representatives

Goal: Ensure that the United States’s vital water resources remain clean and unpolluted

For nearly 40 years, the Clean Water Act has served to ensure that our water is safe to drink and that freshwater ecosystems in the United States may thrive. Preventing the release of toxic substances into our country’s water supply has never been more urgent, but the Clean Water Act cannot work as intended if it is not comprehensive in which bodies of water it legally protects. More than 20 million acres of wetlands and half the country’s streams currently lack clear protections under federal law–and a new spending bill moving through the House contains a provision that would keep these waters unprotected.

The Energy and Water Appropriation Act (H.R. 5325), which aims to make appropriations for energy and water development in 2013, cannot be passed in its current state if we want to safeguard our country’s waters from polluters. The so-called “dirty water provision” added by Rep. Denny Rehberg (R-Montana) would prevent the Army Corps of Engineers from restoring protections to those waters that have fallen through the cracks of the Clean Water Act. These wetlands and streams are vital to the ecological health of our nation–yet under the current incarnation of H.R. 5325, nothing would stop developers and mining companies from destroying them in the name of profit.

It’s time we took a stand to protect our most vulnerable waters. The people that rely upon these streams and the larger bodies of water they feed for safe drinking water, as well as the animals who inhabit the country’s wetlands, are at stake. Thankfully, Rep. Jim Moran (D-Virginia) has introduced an amendment to the bill that would strip out the dirty water provision, allowing the Corp to restore vital protections to our country’s waters. Tell the U.S. House of Representatives that they must support this amendment to ensure our nation’s health.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear U.S. House of Representatives,

The people of the United States rely upon the Clean Water Act to know that their water is safe to drink. And the many diverse ecosystems throughout the nation depend on legal protections from polluters to survive. It’s essential that all our natural bodies of water receive federal protection–yet millions of streams and wetlands still aren’t clearly protected under federal law.

The Energy and Water Appropriation Act (H.R. 5325) in its current state would do nothing to ensure that legal protections are restored to these vulnerable waters. If the bill passes without further amendment, the Army Corps of Engineers would not be able to work to safeguard the many small bodies of water that lack protection under the Clean Water Act. Developers, mining companies and other polluters would be free to contaminate these waters at will, putting many citizens in danger of ingesting toxins and destroying the natural ecosystems that make up our country’s landscape.

Rep. Jim Moran (D-Virginia) has introduced an amendment to the act that would remove its “dirty water provision,” allowing engineers to carry out the aims of the Clean Water Act and protect all of our country’s waters. I urge you to integrate this amendment before moving forward with the Energy and Water Appropriation Act. The well-being of our citizens and our environment depends on it.

Sincerely,
[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: aspheric.lens via Flickr.

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One Comment

  1. Gen Lovyet Agustsson says:

    no more pollution!

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