January 27, 2018
Contact: Amy Kober, 503-708-1145
Washington – A draft infrastructure proposal from the White House would undercut critical clean water protections and fails to address the country’s looming water infrastructure crisis.
“Weakening clean water protections to give advantages to polluters is the last thing our communities need,” said Bob Irvin, President of American Rivers. “Americans know that we don’t need to sacrifice clean water to build new bridges and roads and we certainly don’t need to sacrifice our natural heritage to build costly new dams. Our families want real infrastructure solutions that make us stronger, safer and more prosperous.”
President Trump’s draft plan would allow corporations to sidestep public health, worker safety, and clean water protections for infrastructure projects, including for dams, toll roads, pipelines, drilling projects, and new mines.
In its 2017 report card on the nation’s infrastructure, the American Society of Civil Engineers gave the nation’s water infrastructure a “D” grade. The Environmental Protection Agency has estimated that more than $650 billion must be invested in water infrastructure over the next 20 years just to meet current environmental protection and public health needs. The impacts of outdated infrastructure cause the most harm to lower income neighborhoods and communities of color already suffering from a lack of investment and opportunity.
American Rivers called on Congress to prioritize the following in any federal infrastructure investment:
- Increase funding for our nation’s water infrastructure needs
- Prioritize nature-based solutions including source water protection, floodplain restoration, water use efficiency, and green stormwater infrastructure
- Keep safe, clean, reliable water affordable and available to all
- Uphold environmental, health and safety standards
- Invest in water efficiency instead of building expensive and destructive new dams
“Congress must reject the President’s proposal and advance meaningful water infrastructure solutions that provide robust funding, promote nature-based solutions, and ensure a future of clean water for everyone,” said Irvin.
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ABOUT AMERICAN RIVERS
American Rivers protects wild rivers, restores damaged rivers and conserves clean water for people and nature. Since 1973, American Rivers has protected and restored more than 150,000 miles of rivers through advocacy efforts, on-the-ground projects and an annual America’s Most Endangered Rivers® campaign. Headquartered in Washington, DC, American Rivers has offices across the country and more than 275,000 members, supporters and volunteers.