Letter to the Editor: EPA must continue to protect our river


In response to the February 11 article, “Riverkeeper aims to move cattle out of river by 2015:”

In Virginia, we all love to visit the Shenandoah River for hiking, boating, or just enjoying the natural beauty. One of my favorite activities growing up was tubing down the Shenandoah near Harper’s Ferry. Our rivers are some of the best places for recreation in Virginia, and they should be clean enough for us to enjoy.

Despite its importance to our community, right now the Shenandoah River is far too polluted. Loopholes in the Clean Water Act have left 57 percent of Virginia’s streams vulnerable to pollution, including many that feed and clean the Shenandoah River. Even worse, this risks the health of 2 million Virginians who get their drinking water from threatened waterways.

The time is now for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to protect the Shenandoah River. Thankfully, the EPA took a critical step forward this past fall when it initiated the process to finally close these loopholes. I urge EPA to propose a strong standard to help ensure that the Shenandoah River is clean enough for fishing, swimming, and drinking for years to come.

Kimberly Williams, Environment Virginia, Leesburg