Wetlands protection
Coastal ecosystems are located on either saline or fresh bodies of water. Beaches, wetlands, watersheds and estuaries are all part of this ecosystem -as are dunes, reefs and coastal islands. Many of these areas have suffered immense damage from development, overfishing and pollution. These ecosystems are the recipients of most non-point source pollutants such as runoff from farms, city streets and industry. There has been debate over whether the 1972 Clean Water Act (CWA) protects all American waterways or just our “navigable” waterways from environmental damage and pollution. Wetland protections provided by the CWA were erased in 2001 when the Supreme Court ruled the EPA and the US Army Corps of Engineers had no jurisdiction over non-navigable waters. That controversial decision enables developers and farmers to drain, bulldoze, fill and destroy so-called “isolated” wetland areas. Many feel the Supreme Court erred in its interpretation of the Clean Water Act. They say the legislative history of the Act clearly states the statute is meant to apply to all the waters of the United States.

Pending Legislation:
H.R.573 - Estuary Urgent Needs Priority Program Act

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Poll Opening Date
March 26, 2020
Poll Closing Date
April 1, 2020

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