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Water

EPA To Move Forward With Controversial Watershed Rule

EPA has decided in favor of proposing a controversial watershed rule that would significantly revamp the Clean Water Act's impaired waters program, according to municipal, state and industry sources close to agency deliberations. EPA's decision follows a period of indecision in which environmentalists lobbied the agency to drop the watershed rule, while states, wastewater treatment officials and industry groups urged the agency to forge ahead with the plan.

Sources say that it is still unclear what regulatory language will be included in the proposed rule.

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West Virginia High Court Backs EPA Right To Set Water TMDLs

The West Virginia Supreme Court has overturned a state circuit decision that upheld the state's authority to review and even reject controversial water standards set by EPA, referred to as total maximum daily loads (TMDLs).

Industry lawyers had praised the circuit court decision, saying that it may have implications in other states where EPA is developing TMDLs. These sources explain that other states may challenge EPA's TMDLs in court, and although the West Virginia decision is not binding on other state courts, judges may look to this case for guidance.

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Bush EPA Reverses Clinton Administration Decision On Impaired Waters Listings

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Reversing a Clinton administration decision, the Bush administration is supporting a Florida rule that requires the state to impose fewer regulatory controls over discharges into impaired water bodies.

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