Organizations join an amicus brief in support of the Chesapeake Clean Water Blueprint
The nation’s leading park advocacy organization, the nonprofit National Parks Conservation Assn. (NPCA), and the West Virginia Rivers Coalition, which works to promote clean waterways in West Virginia, filed an amicus brief in support of the Chesapeake Clean Water Blueprint, a plan for restoring clean water in Chesapeake streams and rivers. NPCA, the West Virginia Rivers Coalition and 26 additional organizations are urging the U.S. Court of Appeals in the Third Circuit (13-4079) to uphold a federal district court’s September 2013 ruling in support of the Clean Water Blueprint.
Earlier this year, 21 state attorneys general joined the American Farm Bureau Federation's efforts to dismantle the Chesapeake’s Clean Water Blueprint. The bureau’s appeal, if successful, would not only threaten clean water for Chesapeake-area residents, but also would threaten efforts for clean water across the country.
In a remarkable example of collaboration, the Chesapeake Clean Water Blueprint was developed and agreed upon by citizens working with local, state and federal stakeholders—all with the goal of achieving clean water for the surrounding communities, and was again supported publicly by Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring this month. Currently, urban and suburban development and agricultural practices have resulted in increased levels of polluted storm water and nutrient runoff into Chesapeake streams and rivers, threatening progress otherwise being made to reduce pollution from industrial sources.
“The Elk River chemical leak that contaminated drinking water for 300,000 West Virginians and shut down business in our state capital, showed the need for reasonable regulations to protect our priceless clean water resources,” said Angie Rosser, Executive Director of the West Virginia Rivers Coalition. “We strongly support efforts to reduce pollution in West Virginia and in neighboring rivers and streams.”
The NPCA and West Virginia Rivers Coalition amicus brief was submitted to the U.S. Court of Appeals in the Third Circuit in support of upholding the successful Chesapeake Clean Water Blueprint. It was signed by an additional 26 national and regional organizations representing all 21 states whose attorneys general oppose the plan for clean water for the Chesapeake region, and by extension, communities across the country.