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By Eliza Steinmeier and Michael Helfrich | August 24, 2010
Over the past several months, environmentalists in the Chesapeake Bay region have been closely watching the Chesapeake Clean Water and Ecosystem Restoration Act of 2009, introduced by Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin of Maryland. The Cardin bill, as it is commonly known, is being offered as a way to clean up a watershed that has suffered for decades from industrial abuse and political ineptitude. It is being touted by some as the last great chance to save the bay. Unfortunately, in its current form, this bill will end up doing more harm than good.
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NEWS
August 14, 2014
If Baltimore were actually considering privatizing its water system, the 50 or so people who were protesting outside City Hall on Wednesday would have had a strong case to be upset. But it's not. Rather, Baltimore is looking for a consultant to evaluate the operation and maintenance of its aging system to find ways to increase efficiency - something that should be greatly in the public interest at a time when rates are constantly going up and broken water mains are distressingly common.
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NEWS
By New York Times News Service Sun staff writer Timothy B. Wheeler contributed to this article | May 17, 1995
WASHINGTON -- The House of Representatives approved far-reaching changes to the Clean Water Act yesterday, a powerful signal that conservatives have the votes to carry their crusade against federal regulations into territories governed by the nation's core environmental laws.It was the first vote in the 104th Congress to rewrite whole sections of a major conservation law, and its backers fought off almost every attempt to amend their proposal.The legislation would give more authority to the states and more weight to economic considerations when water quality standards are set and when farmers, businesses and sewage treatment plants are told how to meet them.
NEWS
By Stephen Schaff | August 4, 2014
The new Waters of the U.S. rule is designed to clarify that the Clean Water Act protects a variety of important waters, including seasonal and rain-dependent streams, as well as wetlands near rivers and streams. Getting it implemented will depend on support from our members of Congress for the agencies' proposal. It'll affect a lot more than your favorite crab cakes - it could save your job. Think clean water only counts when it comes out of your tap or when you dive in at the beach?
NEWS
By DAVID G. SAVAGE and DAVID G. SAVAGE,LOS ANGELES TIMES | October 12, 2005
WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court, in a potentially far-reaching clash between the environment and the rights of property owners, agreed yesterday to consider limiting the federal government's power to protect hundreds of millions of acres of wetlands. After its first private conference led by Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., the court said it would hear three cases that ask the justices to cut back on the reach of the Clean Water Act of 1972, the anti-pollution measure that led to the cleanup of streams, rivers and bays around the United States.
NEWS
By DAVID G. SAVAGE and DAVID G. SAVAGE,LOS ANGELES TIMES | May 16, 2006
WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court sided with the environment over electric power yesterday, ruling that state regulators may require a steady flow of water over power dams to benefit both fish and kayakers. The unanimous decision holds that states may protect the health of their rivers, even though hydroelectric power dams are regulated exclusively by the federal government. The dispute arose over five small dams on the Presumpscot River in Maine, but the court's decision affects an estimated 1,500 power dams in 45 states.
NEWS
By Matthew Purdy and Matthew Purdy,NEW YORK TIMES NEWS SERVICE | March 20, 2003
CEDAR GROVE, N.J. -- Back when the Peckman River was a watery dump for sewage, grass clippings and broken furniture, the notion of its becoming a trout stream seemed like a fantasy. But two sewage plants on the small river were upgraded. Residents cleared debris, then began stocking the river with trout. The state wants to label this unremarkable river in the unbroken sprawl of northern New Jersey a trout stream. The moral of the tale: Be careful what you fish for. The federal Clean Water Act, filtered through the state bureaucracy, is emitting a fine mess.
NEWS
By Stephen Schaff | August 4, 2014
The new Waters of the U.S. rule is designed to clarify that the Clean Water Act protects a variety of important waters, including seasonal and rain-dependent streams, as well as wetlands near rivers and streams. Getting it implemented will depend on support from our members of Congress for the agencies' proposal. It'll affect a lot more than your favorite crab cakes - it could save your job. Think clean water only counts when it comes out of your tap or when you dive in at the beach?
NEWS
By Dennis O'Brien and Dennis O'Brien,SUN STAFF | October 19, 2002
One in five of the sewer plants and industries permitted to dump hazardous chemicals into Maryland's waterways have exceeded federal limits since 1999, according to a Washington-based environmental group. The report by Public Interest Research Group uses Environmental Protection Agency data to show that 19 sewer plants and industries in Maryland exceeded permitted limits for hazardous chemical discharges between 1999 and last year. Nationwide, the report said that four out of five plants exceeded federal limits.
NEWS
By LOS ANGELES TIMES | February 18, 1997
NEW YORK - Bundled up against bone-chilling cold, the two intrepid fishermen cast their lines into the swirling waters of the East River as traffic from a busy highway flowed nearby.It was 11 degrees as they walked the promenade along the river's edge in Manhattan, trying to keep warm."I am here almost every day," said Peter Wright, 51, an air-conditioning repairman wearing a New York Rangers jacket with a hood pulled up over his ears. "I'm a die-hard fisherman.""My big catch is striped bass," said his companion, Jose Rivera, 59, a construction worker sporting a bulky blue coat and woolen cap. "Sometimes we catch bluefish.
NEWS
July 12, 2014
I am writing in response to Chris Wood's commentary about pollution in the Chesapeake Bay ("Trout, the bay - and your drinking water - at risk in the Senate," June 18). As a girl raised for more than 13 years in Maryland, I grew up boating, crabbing and swimming in the bay and the Severn River, and I am deeply saddened to see how the bay's health has declined since then. The Chesapeake Bay produces 500 million pounds of seafood a year. I have experienced this firsthand when I caught blue crabs for our family dinner many nights.
NEWS
June 22, 2014
This spring, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency took some long-overdue steps to fix the Clean Water Act, ending confusion over which streams and wetlands are protected by the law. Loopholes in the law created over the past decade have left more the half the stream miles in the U.S. and drinking water sources for 100 percent of Baltimore City residents at risk from pollution and development. Polluters and their allies in Congress are fighting tooth and nail to block the EPA from taking this common sense step to protect clean water.
NEWS
By Chris Wood | June 18, 2014
On Monday, the Chesapeake Executive Council signed the Chesapeake Watershed Agreement, a collaborative effort across multiple states to protect and restore the Chesapeake Bay. But the celebration of the watershed agreement may be premature. Down the road in Congress there is an effort under way to strip the protections of the Clean Water Act from small headwater streams that feed the bay with cold, clean water. The federal government recently proposed a rule to clarify a politically charged Supreme Court ruling which undermined 30 years of protection of the Clean Water Act for small headwater streams.
NEWS
By Bob Gallagher and Joanna Diamond | June 17, 2014
It's not easy telling the next governor of Maryland that he or she needs to start thinking right now about manure, but the winner of this fall's election won't have any time to waste. Toxic algal blooms and intersex fish are two examples of the threat the agriculture industry poses. We like to think of our farms as open space and natural operations that provide the food we need. But without proper pollution controls, not all 21st century farms are environmentally benign. Unfortunately, that threat is well documented in Maryland.
NEWS
By Rena Steinzor | December 26, 2013
If you own a car in Maryland, you know the experience. Every two years, you get a light brown envelope from the Motor Vehicle Administration with a bill for your automobile registration fee - $77.50 per year as of July, and more if your vehicle weighs two tons or more. Nobody particularly likes paying registration fees, but we do it. And somewhere in the back of our minds we recognize, grudgingly perhaps, that like driver's license renewal fees, registration fees help offset the cost of making sure vehicles on Maryland's roads are safe, that their polluting emissions are within acceptable limits, and that the people who drive them are licensed to do so. So far as I know, there's no way I could to get the MVA to waive my registration fee. If I want to drive my car, I have to pay. Fair enough.
NEWS
November 4, 2013
With the 2014 general election almost exactly one year away, at least five of Maryland's gubernatorial candidates are scheduled to debate environmental issues for the first time tomorrow in Annapolis. No doubt questions will range from smart growth to climate change to the future of the Chesapeake Bay, but surely no topic is likely to prove more contentious than what Maryland should do about polluted run-off from city and suburban streets. Voters would be wise to pay attention to what the candidates have to say on the subject as it may prove the best way to sort those who claim to care about clean water from those who are willing to do something about it. The political grandstanding over the state's "rain tax" has been one of the more disheartening developments to hit the local environmental movement in recent years.
NEWS
By Gady A. Epstein and Gady A. Epstein,SUN STAFF | February 9, 2002
Federal regulators have offered Mayor Martin O'Malley a settlement that would force the city to make substantial repairs to its aging sewer system at a cost of roughly $900 million, a gargantuan undertaking that could translate into a tripling of sewer bills for Baltimore residents. O'Malley said yesterday he will meet in the next two weeks with federal attorneys in a last-ditch attempt to soften what he calls a "very unjust" settlement offer, which was completed in recent weeks with the city's attorneys, after more than two years of federal investigation and confidential negotiations to resolve numerous violations of the Clean Water Act. The city's nearly century-old sewers have long been troubled by overflows that have dumped millions of gallons of raw sewage into tributaries of the Chesapeake Bay. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Justice, joined by state environmental regulators, have threatened a lawsuit under the federal Clean Water Act unless the city agrees to fix those problems quickly.
NEWS
By Larry Schweiger | June 15, 2007
Water flows downhill. From that basic law of physics, it follows that anything dumped into a water source - including pollutants - will eventually wend its way downstream through the interconnectedness of wetlands, tributaries, streams, rivers, ponds and lakes. For this reason, Congress passed the Clean Water Act of 1972 to set a national standard protecting all the nation's waters. For more than three decades, the agencies charged with enforcing those safeguards have viewed the aquatic system as a whole, realizing that the capillaries connect to the bloodstream.
NEWS
September 30, 2013
As highlighted in "A Victory for the Chesapeake" (Sept. 19), Pennsylvania Judge Sylvia Rambo recently issued a thoughtful ruling in defense of the Environmental Protection Agency's authority to enforce the Clean Water Act. After a challenge by the Farm Bureau and others, the federal court affirmed that the EPA has the authority to issue pollution limits based on sound science and can continue doing its job of protecting the environment. This is good news for those of us who enjoy clean water for recreational purposes, but even more importantly, this is great news for those of us who depend on our water resources for food and commodities.
FEATURES
By Carrie Wells, The Baltimore Sun | July 31, 2013
An environmental advocacy group filed legal action against the city of Baltimore Wednesday, alleging that the city has not complied with a 2002 agreement to lessen sewage outflows that pollute area waterways. The group Blue Water Baltimore filed a motion in federal court to join an existing federal enforcement action that required the city to take a number of steps to address alleged violations of the Clean Water Act. In the motion, the group claims federal authorities "failed to adequately enforce" the water cleanup agreement, called a consent decree, they and the city reached in 2002.
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