December 17, 2019

Chair DeFazio Slams Trump Administration Over Continued Plans to Roll Back Protections for Nation’s Waters

Washington, D.C. – Today, Chair of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Peter DeFazio (D-OR) sent a letter to Administrator Andrew Wheeler of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) expressing his strong disapproval of the Trump Administration’s plans to move forward with rolling back protections for our Nation’s waterways—a clear and destructive priority of this Administration.

“Your repeated refusal to publicly quantify the scope of waters that would lose existing Clean Water protection under the Trump Dirty Water Rule is unreasonable, as the American public and affected stakeholders are deprived of any information on how their lives and livelihoods will be affected by this action – which is contrary to the Administrative Procedures Act prohibition on ‘arbitrary and capricious’ agency actions.”

“Again, I urge you to withdraw the Dirty Water Rule and recommit to your agency’s mission under the Clean Water Act to restore and maintain the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of the Nation’s waters. That is what the American people demand of us, and what is right and just for generations of American families yet to come,” DeFazio wrote. 

DeFazio also pressed the EPA on their blatant refusal to respond to Committee requests for comment. EPA’s Assistant Administrator for the Office of Water, David Ross, came before the Committee on September 19th and has yet to respond in any substantive way on the impacts of this Dirty Water Rule.

A full copy of the letter can be found here.

On September 12, 2019, Chair Peter DeFazio (D-OR) and Chair of the Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment Grace Napolitano (D-CA) released a Committee report that puts a spotlight on the worst actions the Trump administration has implemented or is trying to implement. Read the report here.