On Monday the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that Pennsylvania’s final Watershed Implementation Plan did not demonstrate how the Commonwealth would meet its Bay Restoration goals for nitrogen and sediment pollution reduction.
Following the announcement Alison Prost, Chesapeake Bay Foundation Vice President for Environmental Protection and Restoration, issued this statement.
“Pennsylvania’s farmers and communities have demonstrated that they are willing to do what needs to be done if given the resources. This year, the Commonwealth stepped up its funding for agricultural conservation practices. While this wave of funding is an important first step, farmers and communities need certainty that funding will be available year after year.
“Unfortunately, Pennsylvania’s latest plan to clean up its rivers and streams is still lacking the creditable pollution-reduction strategies and sustained funding needed to put those strategies in place. And while we appreciate EPA’s reinvigorated commitment to the partnership by way of oversight and assistance, that alone will not be sufficient to get Pennsylvania across the finish line.
“Along with assistance must come accountability. EPA’s failure to adequately hold Pennsylvania accountable is why CBF, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia are suing EPA. We remain hopeful that negotiations in that case will result in the necessary actions and sustained funding needed to restore clean water, improve local economies, and preserve Pennsylvania’s way of life.”