I don’t know about you, but I have been working my butt off trying to make sure that beaches in Chicago are free of contaminants and litter. Why am I doing this? Because I want to not only swim in Lake Michigan, I want to be able to at least believe the water won’t kill me if accidentally swallowed.
This week, Congress is debating proposals that would strip the federal Clean Water Act of its power and cut clean water funding. What the hell am I working for? Am I spitting in the wind?
Tell your representative to oppose HR 2018, the “Clean Water Cooperative Federalism Act of 2011.”
For 40 years, the Clean Water Act has enabled the EPA to create a level playing field for water quality that has improved our waters and protected public health. In the Great Lakes, the Clean Water Act is the driving force for reducing dangerous toxic pollutants. It requires EPA to help the states implement Great Lakes water quality criteria that keep our beaches clean and our drinking water safe.
Before the Clean Water Act, the Cuyahoga River (which flows into Lake Erie) was so polluted it caught fire and burned for several days. A river caught fire!!!! The Clean Water Act is why the Chicago River was finally targeted for cleanup by U.S. EPA. The Clean Water Act is what is allowing the Great Lakes states to protect themselves from the discharge of invasive species in our water. It is a basic, essential and critical protection for all of the Great Lakes.
Tell Congress to protect the law that is bringing our polluted waters back from the brink. Tell them now.