APHA applauds EPA’s Clean Water Act rule

Date: May 27 2015

Contact: Mandi Yohn, 202-777-2509

APHA applauds U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Water Act rule 

New regulation will improve water quality and better protect the public’s health

Washington, D.C., May 27, 2015 — The American Public Health Association voiced strong support today for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Water Act rule. The new regulation — drafted jointly by EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers — clarifies the protection of millions of acres of rivers, lakes, streams and wetlands under the Clean Water Act, including streams that provide some portion of water to drinking water systems that serve nearly 117 million people.

The rule restores the federal government’s authority to monitor pollution and degradation in smaller bodies of water in order to better improve water quality. This part of the regulation is critical to protecting the public’s health, as many of the nation’s major bodies of water depend on these water sources to filter out pollutants and provide clean water to the populations they serve.

“Our nation relies on clean water for basic survival — it’s essential for daily activities including drinking, cooking, bathing and recreational use. When that water is polluted, Americans are at risk of exposure to a number of harmful contaminants,” said APHA Executive Director Georges Benjamin, MD. “We are pleased that EPA has moved forward with this strong, evidence-based rule that will be vital to protecting the public from water pollution and keeping our nation healthy.”

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The American Public Health Association champions the health of all people and all communities. We strengthen the public health profession. We speak out for public health issues and policies backed by science. We are the only organization that influences federal policy, has a 140-plus year perspective and brings together members from all fields of public health. Visit www.apha.org.