Thursday, July 19, 2018

U.S. House Narrowly Votes To Restrict EPA Authority To Hold States Accountable For Chesapeake Bay Cleanup Obligations

The U.S. House voted 213 to 202 to approve an amendment offered by Virginia Congressman Bob Goodlatte (R) to restrict the ability of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to hold states accountable for meeting their Chesapeake Bay cleanup obligations.
Will Baker, President of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, issued this statement in response to the vote--
“With this amendment, the House voted to undermine the Bay states and what stands to be the greatest environmental success story of our time: Saving the Chesapeake Bay.
“The Chesapeake Bay Blueprint is a partnership among the watershed states and EPA to meet the requirements of the Clean Water Act and restore the Bay after years of failed attempts. And it’s working because it has teeth that previous efforts lacked. Bay grasses are at record levels, the dead zone is getting smaller, and oysters are beginning to rebound.
“Only EPA can enforce the agreement if a state fails to meet its commitments. By suspending this authority, the Goodlatte Amendment threatens progress being made and the legacy of oysters, crabs, and clean water for future generations.
“Rejecting the Bay states wishes by gutting the Blueprint’s accountability is shortsighted. CBF will work with the Bay region’s Senators to ensure that the Goodlatte amendment is not included in their appropriations legislation.”
Members of Congress voting against the amendment included Pennsylvania’s Rep. Matt Cartwright.
For more on Chesapeake Bay-related issues in Pennsylvania, visit the Chesapeake Bay Foundation-PA webpage.  Click Here to sign up for Pennsylvania updates (bottom of left column).  Click Here to support their work.
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