Undoing Common Sense: Clean Water Action Denounces Congressional Efforts to Gut Protections for Drinking Water and Clean Air

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Washington, DC - This week Congress began the process of dismantling several environmental, consumer, worker, and public health protections finalized by the Obama administration in 2016. Two of the first rules under attack are the Stream Protection Rule, which provides  safeguards for the drinking water and public heath in communities impacted coal mining and a Bureau of Land Management rule that requires oil and gas companies to reduce intentional methane waste on federal lands.

GOP leadership in the House and the Senate is utilizing and obscure and rarely used tool - the Congressional Review Act - that allows legislators to repeal federal regulations within a certain timeframe with very little debate. The Congressional Review Act also constrains future administrations from taking action to protect communities by prohibiting the development of a "substantially similar" rule in the future. Clean Water Action vehemently opposes the attacks on common sense safeguards using the CRA.

Clean Water Action Campaigns Director Lynn Thorp released the following statement.

"Poll after poll shows that Americans support strong protections for water, air, and public health. That's why leadership in Congress is using the Congressional Review Act to gut commonsense protections like the Stream Protection Rule - they hope the lack of meaningful debate means voters won't notice Congress is putting polluter profits ahead of public health and other safeguards. The CRA is a heavy handed tool that permanently puts the interests of corporate campaign donors, like the fossil fuel industry, first."

"Americans didn't vote to undermine clean water or clean air. They didn't vote to protect the bottom-lines of oil and gas and coal companies. Any member of the Senate or House who votes for these bills should expect voters to hold them accountable for supporting an extreme anti-environmental agenda. We'll make sure they do."


Since our founding during the campaign to pass the landmark Clean Water Act in 1972, Clean Water Action has worked to win strong health and environmental protections by bringing issue expertise, solution-oriented thinking and people power to the table. We will protect clean water in the face of attacks from a polluter friendly Administration and Congress.

Michael Kelly