Monday, October 18, 2010

Why We Love the Clean Water Act

Waterfall in the Calico Mountains (Kurt Kuznicki)

On October 18, 1972, a variety of amendments modified and reorganized the Federal Water Pollution Control Act. Now known as the Clean Water Act, it allows the Environmental Protection Agency to establish programs to set wastewater standards for the industrial sector as well as water quality standards for all surface water contaminants.

The statute employs a variety of regulatory and nonregulatory tools to sharply reduce direct pollutant discharges into waterways, finance municipal wastewater treatment facilities, and manage polluted runoff.Environmental Protection Agency
The CWA aims to restore and maintain the physical, chemical, and biological integrity of America’s waters. With clean water, fish, shellfish, and wildlife can maintain healthy population levels, and plants can flourish in their natural habitats.

Marshes and shallow lakes form the American Avocet’s habitat (photo by Diane McAllister)

Nevada wilderness areas contain a variety of surface waters that are monitored for contaminants and protected from non-permitted pollution discharge thanks to the Clean Water Act.

Fishing at Baker Lake (photo by Jim Yoakum)

Kayaking in Black Canyon (photo by Brian Beffort)

Alder Creek in Blue Lakes (Brian Beffort)

You can read the entire text of the Clean Water Act here.

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