River Location: Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Washington D.C.
The Potomac is the "nation's river," rich in culture and history and the lifeblood of our nation’s capital. The river provides drinking water to more than five million people and offers abundant opportunities for recreation. However, the Potomac is threatened by agricultural and urban pollution that will only get worse if Congress rolls back national clean water protections. If Congress puts polluters before people, our nation’s river – and many other rivers nationwide – will become a threat to public health, unsafe for drinking water, wildlife, or recreation.
Take Action to Protect Our Nation's River
Congress must stop the ongoing attempts to weaken the Clean Water Act or prevent the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from restoring protections for small streams and wetlands under the Act. Urge Congress to save the Clean Water Act.
- The U.S. Senate
As a supporter of American Rivers, I am writing to urge you to oppose the "Preserve the Waters of the United States Act" (S. 2245/H.R. 4965) introduced by Senator Barrasso (R-WY) and Representative Mica (R-FL), which puts polluters before people by preventing the restoration of critical protections for clean water. This bill would effectively block the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers from finalizing guidance to clarify the scope of the Clean Water Act, ensuring that the small streams and wetlands that are a source of drinking water for 117 million Americans will continue to be vulnerable to degradation and pollution.
Recently, American Rivers named the Potomac River the #1 Most Endangered River in the country due to the threat of these clean water rollbacks. Flowing through our nation's capital and providing drinking water to millions, the Potomac is emblematic of what is at stake for rivers and public health nationwide.
We have made great progress since the passage of the Clean Water Act in 1972 but recently, clean water safeguards have come under attack, leaving an estimated 2 million stream miles (excluding Alaska) at risk. In the Potomac River basin alone, close to 10,000 miles of streams may now be left vulnerable. Pollution in the Potomac threatens drinking water supplies, kills fish, and poses a health risk to people who swim, fish, and boat on the river.
This threat could get even worse if this bill passes in Congress. Americans want and expect clean water that is safe to drink, clean to swim in, and healthy enough to support fish and wildlife. Bills like S. 2245/H.R. 4965 that turn back the clock on the Clean Water Act threaten the health of the Potomac River and every river and stream in the country.
I urge you to stand up for clean water and America's Most Endangered Rivers®. Please oppose this bill S. 2245/H.R. 4965 and all other dirty water bills.
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