Environmentalists Say Trump's Clean Water Rollback Will Harm Northwest Streams

Mar 1, 2017

President Trump Tuesday issued an executive order to weaken clean water rules. In the Northwest, environmentalists say that’s bad news for fish. Farm and industry groups are pleased with the order.

President Obama signed the so-called Waters of the U.S. rule in 2015 to clarify uncertainty about who can regulate smaller streams and wetlands. The rule never went into effect. It was challenged in a multi-state lawsuit.

Now, conservation groups in the Northwest worry that rolling back clean water regulations will harm fish, like threatened and endangered salmon and steelhead, and other wildlife. Lisa Pelly is with Trout Unlimited.

“This rollback really affects a lot of the tributaries and streams where a lot of fish species live and grow before they go out to Puget Sound or the ocean or the Columbia River,” Pelly said.

Oregon’s Farm Bureau president Barry Bushue says the water rule would have overburdened Northwest agriculture. He says the rollback will give people control of their private property.

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