Letter to the Editor: Wolfe, Goodlatte sided with polluters


Virginians should be doing everything we can to protect our rivers, lakes, and streams. Unfortunately, it seems that Congress, including Representatives Frank Wolf and Bob Goodlatte, is doing everything it can to put them in jeopardy.

Congress just voted to bar the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency from restoring protections of the Clean Water Act to more than half of the nation’s rivers and streams. This impacts 28,000 miles of Virginia’s rivers, left in limbo for nearly a decade after a pair of Supreme Court decisions created a loophole in the law.

EPA has proposed a rule to close this loophole and again safeguard under federal law the state’s smaller headwaters and streams. More than 15,000 Virginians have already commented in favor of the rule, but polluters have waged a bitter fight against it.

So instead of siding with our waters like the Shenandoah and the Virginians who love to fish, boat, and swim in them, last Tuesday Congress and Representatives Goodlatte and Wolf sided with the polluters. That’s a real disappointment.

Jessie Mehrhoff, Environment Virginia, Richmond