Preparing for our trip to National Affairs and Legislation Meeting in Washington this month has provided a deeper understanding of the conservation issues before Congress and the importance of taking action. Each month, we hope to share information about these topics to help keep everyone informed and aware of opportunities for advocacy.
Reading through the one-page Position Papers on the GCA Website was a great place to start. They cover eight topics from climate change to sustainable agriculture to transportation and beyond.
This month we are highlighting threats to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the EPA as well as the Clean Water Rule currently before congress. NEPA and the EPA are under threat from bills that would cripple the EPA through staffing cuts and even eliminate it altogether. There are also efforts at play to alter or circumvent the NEPA review process. GCA supports adequate funding for EPA programs and maintaining NEPA (pronounced NEEPAW) scrutiny over major federal projects.
The Clean Water Rule is under attack through budget negotiations and appropriations. GCA supports full implementation of the Clean Water Rule which restores protections under the Clean Water Act to lakes, streams and wetlands that help prevent flooding, filter pollution and supply one in three Americans with safe drinking water.
Share your support on these important issues with your Senators and Congresspeople by sending an email or making a phone call to their offices. It will make a difference! In your call or email make sure you state your name and address or zip code so they count your call and know where it comes from. A sample script is: “I believe in supporting funding for the EPA and maintaining NEPA. Please continue to support these important programs. Thank you for answering my call.” and/or “I believe that full implementation of the Clean Water Rule is essential for protection to our lakes, streams and wetlands and safe drinking water for all Americans. Thank you for your continued support of this important legislation.”
For additional information on some of the new House of Representatives bills that might impact the current environmental protection, see the current issue of High Country News. A link is included below.
Senator Michael Bennet
Senator Cory Gardner
Congresswoman Diana DeGette
For other congressional districts outside of District 1 you can find your Representative: http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/
High Country News: http://www.hcn.org/issues/49.2/the-house-wants-to-change-how-regulations-are-made