In response to a public outcry over water pollution, the Clean Water Act was passed into law in 1972 with strong bipartisan support. By making any discharges into the nation’s waters illegal without a permit and establishing protective water quality standards, the Act fundamentally revolutionized the way we address water pollution. As a result, chemical and industrial pollution has significantly decreased. The loss of wetlands, which provide protection from flooding and filter out pollutants, has been reduced by almost three-fourths. Now that modern sewage treatment is required, Acup Creek and thousands of streams across the country are healthier. Rivers are remarkably resilient, if we give them a chance.
For more on this story, visit: Wm. Robert Irvin: The Clean Water Act Turns 40.
By Mark Gold
October 17, 2012
On Thursday, one of the country’s most effective environmental laws — the federal Clean Water Act — will turn 40. Los Angeles County residents owe the law a huge debt of gratitude. Because of it, Santa Monica Bay no longer has a dead zone, its bottom fish no longer have tumors and fin rot, and the days of baywide summer beach closures due to multimillion-gallon sewage spills are long gone.
These successes didn’t simply happen. They required the combined efforts of government and public activists, and took considerable financial investment, along with excellent engineering and construction work, and leadership at multiple levels. But without the Clean Water Act, they couldn’t have been accomplished.
For more on this story, visit: The Clean Water Act turns 40 – latimes.com.