FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 17, 2016
Matt Rota, Gulf Restoration Network Kris Sigford, Minnesota Center for Env. Advocacy
Peter Goode, Washington Univ. Env. Law Clinic Alicia Lloyd, Missouri Coalition for the Env.
ENVIRONMENTAL COALITION CALLS ON EPA TO STEP UP EFFORTS
TO REDUCE NITROGEN & PHOSPHORUS POLLUTION IN MISSISSIPPI RIVER
New Report Reveals Most States Failing to Manage Nitrogen & Phosphorus Pollution
Mississippi River – The Mississippi River Collaborative (MRC) today released a report that implores the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to take specific actions to regulate excess nitrogen and phosphorus pollution in state waters along the Mississippi River because those 10 states haven’t achieved any significant pollution reductions on their own.
MRC, a partnership of 13 environmental and legal groups, authored the report–entitled “Decades of Delay”–to assess state-level progress to reduce the pollution that threatens drinking water supplies for millions of Americans and causes so-called dead zones that cannot support aquatic life.
“The results of the EPA’s hands-off approach with the Mississippi River basin states are massive algae blooms and nitrate contamination that make our drinking water unsafe and render lakes and rivers unfit for recreation,” said Kris Sigford, Water Quality Director at the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy, an MRC partner. “The Mississippi River Collaborative again calls upon EPA to exercise its Clean Water Act oversight duties and treat the Mississippi as the treasure it is.”
The report suggests six specific steps EPA can take to protect human health and water quality in the Mississippi River. Recommendations include setting numeric limits of allowable nitrogen and phosphorus in state waters, assessing water quality for nitrogen and phosphorus pollution that creates impaired waterways, and ensuring states develop nutrient reduction strategies with specific implementation plans and adequate funding.
“This report reflects a continuing failure to monitor and address the nitrogen and phosphorus pollution in basin states that causes the Gulf Dead Zone,” said Alicia Lloyd, Clean Water Policy Coordinator at the Missouri Coalition for the Environment, an MRC member. “The public should be aware of the extent of nutrient pollution in our waters. We need to step up action to address it.”
Decades of Delay Executive Summary.
Decades of Delay Full Report.
Read more about the report and nutrients in Missouri on the Clean Water Reflections blog.