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On Monday, LCV Government Affairs Coordinator Saachi Kuwayama gave a powerful testimony during the EPA’s comment period for the Dirty Water Rule urging the agency to repeal the Trump-era rule that is perpetuating environmental racism as soon as possible.
Read Saachi’s full testimony below:
Good afternoon. My name is Saachi Kuwayama and I am here on behalf of the League of Conservation Voters. LCV works to ensure that everyone has access to clean, safe, and affordable water, no matter their race or zip code. To that end, I am here to urge the EPA to repeal the Trump administration’s Dirty Water Rule as soon as possible.
I want to begin by thanking the EPA and Army Corps for starting this important process of reconsidering the Dirty Water Rule, which is jeopardizing our waters every day it remains in place. The EPA must take swift action in order to protect our streams, our wetlands, and the communities that depend on them.
There is no time to waste when it comes to repealing the Dirty Water Rule. We need clean water to survive and thrive. Not only do our streams and wetlands provide critical ecological benefits such as filtering pollution and guarding against flooding and sea level rise, which will only increase as climate change gets worse, but they also provide several economic benefits to our communities.
Particularly vulnerable are low-income communities and communities of color who have borne the brunt of racist environmental policies for decades that have often left them without reliable access to clean, safe and affordable water. The Dirty Water Rule has exacerbated this issue, causing further harm and perpetuating environmental injustice. The Biden administration has voiced its commitment to centering justice and healing our country. It is time to act on this commitment by repealing this damaging rule now.
LCV understands the need for a thorough and inclusive process to create a durable and effective new rule. However, we have more than enough information to support repealing the Dirty Water Rule immediately. The EPA has already determined that the rule is reducing clean water protections. Our communities do not have time for inaction. Again, we urge the EPA to fulfill its duty to protect public health and the environment by repealing the Dirty Water Rule as fast as possible.
Thank you very much for your time.