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Water

EPA LENGTHENS COMPLIANCE DATE EXTENSION FOR TROUBLED OIL SPILL RULE

EPA has added 18 months to the already extended compliance deadline for facilities that store oil to implement spill prevention measures, bowing to industry pressure to lengthen a planned one-year delay proposed in June to meet deadlines in the agency's revised spill prevention, control and countermeasure (SPCC) rule.

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SENATORS, ACTIVISTS CITE BUSH WETLANDS GOAL TO OVERTURN KEY POLICIES

A bipartisan group of senators -- including the Democratic presidential ticket of John Kerry (MA) and John Edwards (NC) -- and two key environmental groups are citing President Bush's goal of "gaining" a significant amount of wetlands acreage to press for reversal of controversial wetlands policies, claiming the policies undermine the president's new goals.

The calls to reverse the policies come as Bush is highlighting his wetlands protection initiatives on the campaign trail to boost support from key hunting and fishing groups (see related story).

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Inspector General Considers Broad Report On EPA Water Programs

CHICAGO -- EPA's internal watchdog may conduct an unusually broad study of various Office of Water programs in order to identify common problems and trends, according to an official with the agency's Office of Inspector General (IG).

The report would be unusual for the office because while the IG commonly reviews specific agency programs and management issues, it generally does not issue studies evaluating overall agency efforts to address broad media such as air and water.

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EPA Lengthens Compliance Date Extension For Troubled Oil Spill Rule

EPA has added 18 months to the already extended compliance deadline for facilities that store oil to implement spill prevention measures, bowing to industry pressure to lengthen a planned one-year delay proposed in June to meet deadlines in the agency's revised spill prevention, control and countermeasure (SPCC) rule.

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Critics Argue Bush Wetlands Goal Undermined By Controversial Policies

A bipartisan group of senators -- including the Democratic presidential ticket of John Kerry (MA) and John Edwards (NC) -- and two key environmental groups are citing President Bush's goal of "gaining" a significant amount of wetlands acreage to press for reversal of controversial wetlands policies, claiming the policies undermine the president's new goals.

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New York Cites Nationwide Impact Of Water-Transfer Permits Case

A key case weighing whether water transfers between two waterbodies require clean water permits may hamper state and federal regulators' ability to permit a wide range of activities that rely on similar transfers, including pollution from irrigation, transfer of invasive species, and coalbed methane gas extraction, according to a brief filed by New York state lawyers.

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Groups Cite Water Act History To Limit Law's Application To Groundwater

Municipal wastewater treatment officials are citing legislative history to argue that Congress never intended to regulate groundwater under the Clean Water Act (CWA) in an appellate case that could determine whether discharges to waterbodies with groundwater connections to navigable waters are subject to federal jurisdiction.

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New Report Aims To Help Utilities Gain Support For Water Rate Increases

The American Water Works Association (AWWA), a drinking water supply organization, has developed a set of recommendations to help water utilities build public support for increasing water rates, which the group says is a crucial step in ensuring a safe drinking water supply.

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Agencies Draft Water Quality Monitoring Strategy Despite GAO Proposal

EPA and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) are launching a new collaborative water quality monitoring strategy that sources say is designed to improve the accuracy and decrease the cost of compiling integrated impaired waters and state water quality reports required under the Clean Water Act.

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EPA Officials Say Election Concerns Delay Guidance On Mercury In Water

EPA is delaying the release of a controversial draft guidance that critics say could allow states to avoid setting strict clean water permit limits for mercury, according to several agency officials involved with developing the documents. These sources say release of the guidance has been postponed indefinitely over concerns that Democrats and environmentalists could attack the document as part an election-year effort to criticize the administration's mercury control efforts.

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