April 22, 2020

Chairs DeFazio, Napolitano Respond to Trump Administration’s Finalization of Rule to Gut Federal Clean Water Protections

Washington, D.C. – Chair of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Peter DeFazio (D-OR) and Chair of the Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment Grace F. Napolitano (D-CA) responded to the Trump administration’s announcement that it has finalized its rule to roll back clean water protections over the Nation’s rivers, streams, and wetlands, jeopardizing the safe drinking water of over a hundred million American households.

“The Trump administration’s move to roll back clean water protections, while the country is in the middle of a public health crisis and where access to clean water is critical to saving lives, is cruel and wrong,” said Chair DeFazio. “The administration declared war on clean water and has put the drinking water of 117 million Americans at risk. This administration’s constant willingness to side with special interests and polluters at the expense of regular Americans is extremely disturbing and needs to be stopped. I urge all of my colleagues in Congress to join me in supporting Congressional action to prevent Trump’s Dirty Water Rule – the most significant rollback of Clean Water Act standards in history – from taking effect.”

“It is unconscionable that in the middle of a national health care crisis, the Trump administration is destroying Clean Water standards which will further weaken public health in our country. We are currently dealing with an airborne virus, but this Trump action will spread waterborne disease. Local water agencies are focused on ensuring access to a safe and reliable water supply for drinking and washing hands, clothes, and bodies as we confront the COVID-19 pandemic. Yet, in order to prevent this newly allowed contamination from entering our homes, these agencies will have to spend billions of dollars creating treatment facilities to clean up the mess caused by polluters. This Dirty Water Rule was bad policy previously, but it will now prove to be even more costly to our health as well as our economy,” said Chair Napolitano.

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 outlining the worst actions the Trump administration has implemented or is trying to implement when it comes to clean water. Read the report here.