Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Play

Public health experts are concerned many kids have missed important checkups and vaccinations, and a third DC Police officer who responded to the January 6 insurrection takes his own life.

Play

The White House calls for states to rescue renters, Senators dissect a massive infrastructure plan, and both the White House and Congress are losing approval in the eyes of voters.

Groups Look to New Administration to Clean Up Ohio River

Play

Friday, January 15, 2021   

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Groups that advocate for water quality are urging the incoming Biden administration to meet the goals of the Clean Water Act, which means reducing what's known as nutrient pollution in the Ohio River.

After the last four years of federal water regulation rollbacks, ten plus groups filed a petition asking the Environmental Protection Agency and Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission - or ORSANCO - to take immediate steps.

Hank Graddy, chair of the Sierra Club Mississippi River Issue and Kentucky Water Teams, said nutrient pollution poses real threats - including harmful algae blooms, which damage drinking-water systems and sources.

He warned that if agencies continue to put off regulating levels of nitrogen and phosphorus...

"We'll have more and more harmful algae blooms," said Graddy. "They'll happen more frequently, because there'll be more and more fuel for them. And that will make the river less useful and more dangerous for all of us."

He said this is the third petition to set nutrient-loading regulations over many years.

In 2008, the EPA rejected a similar petition for the Mississippi River, indicating the agency planned to work regionally and with states. But Graddy said neither the EPA nor ORSANCO has followed through.

Jason Flickner, executive director and waterkeeper at the Lower Ohio River Waterkeeper organization, said not only do algae blooms threaten drinking water - as they decompose, they use much of the oxygen that other critters in the River rely on, reducing biodiversity.

He said the nitrogen and phosphorus largely come from agriculture, suburban lawn care and wastewater treatment plants.

"We were supposed to have no discharges to waters of the United States by 1982, according to the Clean Water Act," said Flickner. "We missed that deadline. So, you know, other things have been given priority over nutrients."

Flickner said coal ash from coal-fired power plants is also causing issues in the lower basin. He said the Trump administration regulatory rollbacks have held up progress in cleaning up the Ohio River, but he applauds the environmental law firms that have challenged many of them.

Disclosure: Sierra Club, Ohio Chapter contributes to our fund for reporting on Energy Policy, Public Lands/Wilderness, Urban Planning/Transportation, Water. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
The commission charged with drawing Ohio's 99 House and 33 Senate districts meets this week. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- New congressional and legislative maps will soon start to take shape in Ohio. The Ohio Redistricting Commission convenes for the …


Social Issues

DENVER -- Today marks the day Black women in the U.S. will finally earn as much as a white, non-Hispanic man was paid in 2020. Ashley Panelli…

Environment

CHICAGO -- As Illinois residents get ready for more high temperatures this August, utility watchdogs are urging people to practice energy efficiency …


Chronic wasting disease can be transmitted between deer, along with food and soil contaminated by bodily fluids. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

WARREN, Pa. -- A temporary animal-feeding ban is being proposed for the Allegheny National Forest after a captive deer tested positive for chronic …

Social Issues

LOS ANGELES -- Hunger-fighting advocacy groups are speaking out in California, drawing attention to the continuing problem of food insecurity…

A new report from Georgetown University and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends a coordinated and far-reaching public health campaign about childhood vaccinations. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Parents are gearing up for their children to return to the classroom for the first time in over a year, and public health …

Environment

LITCHFIELD, N.H. -- A 63-acre parcel of land along the Merrimack River is becoming part of the New Hampshire Agrarian Commons. The property, known as …

Social Issues

RICHMOND, Va. - Virginia's General Assembly Special Session begins today to budget more than $4 billion in federal COVID relief funds, and advocates …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021