WASHINGTON, DC – Today, U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.), top Democrat on the Environment and Public Works Committee, released the following statement after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced its formal plan to repeal its own Clean Water Rule, which EPA finalized in 2015 after four years of scientific review and unprecedented public engagement.
“Today’s announcement continues Scott Pruitt’s and this administration’s dangerous actions to undermine the basic clean air and clean water protections that every American relies on to keep their family safe. EPA’s 2015 Clean Water Rule came after years of businesses, farmers, developers, state officials and even members of Congress urging the EPA to provide clarity on which streams and wetlands may be regulated by the Clean Water Act. The final rule took into account 1,200 peer-reviewed scientific publications, 400 stakeholder meetings across the country, and more than one million public comments. Without the Clean Water Rule, our nation’s streams and wetlands remain at risk of contamination, businesses across the country lack the certainty they’ve desired for years, and millions of families remain at greater risk of exposure to polluted water.
“Sadly, instead of listening to sound science and overwhelming public opinion, Mr. Pruitt and this administration have yet again decided that less protection for our nation’s waters is best and that we should turn the clock back to a more confusing time. If Mr. Pruitt doesn’t think the current Clean Water Rule is perfect, instead of repealing it, he should do his job and get to work trying to make it better. Americans expect clean water for their families, and they won’t accept an EPA that makes their water dirtier tomorrow than it is today.”