Archive for the Lobby for Clean Water Act Category

VOTE NO on H.B. 2018

HR 2018, entitled, “Clean Water Cooperative Federalism Act of 2011,” as passed by the House and is now being heard by the Senate.  This bill is a direct assault on two key components of the Clean Water Act: enforcement of water quality standards and protection of aquatic resources from discharges of dredged and fill material. Title V (H.R. 2018) would reverse decades of progress in cleaning our nation’s waters. It undermines the cooperative state-federal partnership at the core of the Clean Water Act. Under this title, the U.S. EPA would be stripped of its important authority to ensure that water quality standards are enforced and reflect the latest science. Sadly, this super polluter bill is one in a long line of bills introduced this year whose goals are to give polluters free reign to poison our air and water. The 112th Congress has cast a record-setting 302 anti-environment votes, making it the worst in history on the environment. Congress is starting to hear the bills. Please pay attention. Clean Water Action Letter to Senators with over 300 organizations against this bill

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Save Maumee goes to Washington D.C. represented northeast Indiana for Clean Water Week

  If you would like to see what we said in Washington D.C. last week – CLICK HERE for Save Maumee 2012 Newsletter: Save Maumee Grassroots Organization represented northeast Indiana for Great Lakes Days again this year in Washington D.C. for Clean Water Week, through a grant from Healing Our Waters.  Save Maumee volunteers have represented northeast Indiana in D.C. every year since 2008!  This year was special though because we had Save Maumee volunteers, Celia Garza, Bruce Allen, Ryan Bailey and Abigail King all in attendance! Today, streams and lakes suffer from a legacy of toxic pollution, the spread of invasive species, and loss of habitat.  These factors, among others; threaten jobs, public health and way of life for people who depend on clean water!  Clean water, in fact, has ranked as the number one environmental concern for the last 10 years! 125 people were included in the creation of this document if you would like to know more! “Great Lakes Regional Collaboration” On February 28th & 29th Save Maumee volunteers Bruce Allen, Celia Garza, Ryan Bailey and Abigail King spoke to the following federal legislative offices. U.S. Federal Senators: Dan Coats met with Celia Garza Richard Lugar met

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Combined Sewer Overflows – college term paper

Combined Sewer Overflows   Written by Sean Musi V161    I have spent half of my life in Fort Wayne, Indiana and the number one issue that comes to mind involving the environment is the poor condition of our water ways. This is especially upsetting because the city seems to take some pride in the fact that three rivers meet in it and even have a large week-long festival named after it, Three Rivers.   ​My mind went straight to a presentation given by a local grassroots project while I was studying at my previous college in Fort Wayne. Abigail Frost, founder of Save Maumee Grassroots Movement, spoke about her current efforts as well as how these three bodies of water came to be as unpleasant as they are today.   ​The St. Joe River is where over 200,000 people get their drinking water. This meets the St. Mary’s and both then flow together to create the Maumee. The St. Mary’s, which floods frequently and is highly polluted, passes through much of northeast Indiana. These two rivers come together to form the Maumee, which contains high levels of mercury, PCB and E. coli.,fish consumption advisories, as well as the accumulation of sediment and garbage. The Maumee

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Meetings Recap of LaFarga Copper LLC (Steel Dynamics Inc.)

On January 12, 2012, the Allen County Drainage board had their beginning talks about reconstructing the Bandelier Ditch #3.  Abby Frost-King and Celia Garza specifically requested from different contacts within the Surveyors office, to be informed of the day they would begin conversations. We were not called about this first meeting. They explained that this was only the introduction of the project and that there would be additional meetings. The Drainage Board meets the second and fourth Thursday of every month at 9:30am in the Council courtroom Suite 035 in the Garden level of Citizens Square. The next meeting will be January 26, 2012 at 9:30am. If they continue to speak and plan for this ditch improvement, it is imperative that we all attend to share our opinions…even though we have been informed that there will be a “public hearing” after the plans are in place and THEN the public who live in the area will be able to comment on their findings. Save Maumee had attended the last Allen County Drainage Board meeting of 2011.  We requested the review of the restructuring of Bandilier Ditch #3, since it seemed necessary to do this work before LaFarga Copper LLC (Steel

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Save Maumee Grassroots Org. wins "Organization of the Year Award"

Awards Ceremony at The 4th Annual Greening the Statehouse Policy Forum will be held on Saturday, December 10th at Butler University’s Reilly Room at Atherton Union in downtown Indy from 8:30am-3pm.  So join us for education from Indianapolis policy experts and environmental groups. For reservations call Jesse Karbanda at 317.685.8800 ext. 103 The Hoosier Environmental Council, Indiana’s largest environmental policy organization, has claimed “Save Maumee won Organization of the Year!”  Abigail King, Ryan Bailey and Jain Young will be accepting the award for the group. Supporters of the day include Sierra Club, Blue Green Alliance, Carmel Green Initiative, Indiana Green Business Network, Indiana Recycling Coalition, Indiana Wildlife Federation, Save the Dunes, City of Indianapolis-Office of Sustainability. Save Maumee has been chosen as a result of the positive impact on the community, the group’s great volunteer spirit, passion for the health of the rivers in the Great Lakes region, and ability to organize a number of very successful volunteer driven river clean-up and restoration events. Northeast Indiana Rivers Represented in Washington D.C. Save Maumee has been chosen by Healing Our Waters to represent Northeast Indiana for Clean Water Week during Great Lakes Days in Washington, D.C. The event will be held

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Letter to EPA~WRITE ONE TOO!

The EPA is looking for your input that needs to arrive at their office by May 16th regarding this memorandum http://www.epa.gov/npdes/pubs/establishingtmdlwla_revision.pdf  It is very important that we generate as many comment letters as we can in favor of the parts of the 2010 memo that improve upon the 2002 guidance. The 2002 guidance touted best management practice (BMP)-based approaches as the generally-accepted way to implement TMDLs and to comply with water quality standards except in “rare instances.” This EPA policy had been crafted to reflect the lack of sufficient data and experience available at that time in developing specific TMDL stormwater allocations and appropriate numeric water quality based effluent limits. EPA has expressed their strong interest in getting lots of comments in on this memo. They are planning to use the comments to decide whether to amend it, withdraw it or leave it unchanged.  Save Maumee believes that it would be best IF this memo is left in tact! EPA is going to hear loudly from the regulators and the regulated community; the associations (state agencies and wastewater and stormwater permittees) are organizing their members against this memo. ·        EPA will likely change this memo in some way (if they

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Save Maumee Goes to D.C. ~ Clean Water Week 2011

Save Maumee Grassroots Organization is representing north-east Indiana in Washington D.C. again this year for Clean Water Week!  Bruce Allen made it there on Monday to speak for our waterways  in 2011.  This is the 4th year that Bruce has represented Save Maumee and our local area, with sponsorship from Healing Our Waters. We have written a letter to our 9 U.S. Congressman and our 2 U.S. Senators, that will be delivered personally in D.C. during arranged meetings.  Packages will also be sent to the home districts of 30 State Senators and State Representatives. Who will receive information personally in Washington, D.C.: U.S. Federal Senators: Dan Coats Richard Lugar U.S. House Congressman District 1 –  Pete Visclosky District 2 – Joe Donnelly District 3 – Marlin Stutzman District 4 – Todd Rokita District 5 – Dan Burton District 6 – Mike Pence District 7 – Andre’ Carson District 8 – Larry Bucshon District 9 – Todd Young  We wanted you to know what we said:                                                                                                                    February 26, 2011 Dear ______________, Clean Water Week is a time to reflect on the importance of our waterways and our impact on the health

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A SEWER FULL OF POLLUTERS' AMENDMENTS

These amendments have no place in a spending bill and they effectively aim to “handcuff” EPA and other federal agencies from enforcing current law or help to relax current law: Amendment No. 10 from Rep. Cliff Stearns (FL-6) would prevent EPA from developing or issuing standards that list coal ash as hazardous waste under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. Amendment No. 13 from Rep. Tom Rooney (FL-16) would stop EPA from using its funding to implement, administer or enforce new water quality standards for Florida’s lakes and flowing waters, which were issued in November. Amendment No. 109 from Griffith (VA-9)  would block EPA from using its funding to implement or enforce new guidance for the review of water pollution from proposed coal-mining projects, including mountain-top removal mining. Amendment No. 216 from Rep. David McKinley (WV-1) would stop EPA from administering or enforcing section 404 (c) of the Clean Water Act, which governs dredge-and-fill permits. Amendment No. 217 from McKinley (WV-1) would also block the EPA coal ash rules. Amendment No. 218 from Rep. Bill Johnson (OH-6) would prevent EPA from issuing new rules for the circumstances under which mining may be conducted near streams or from conducting an environmental

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Bill Watch 2011

Indiana Wildlife sent me their bill watch.  Keeping laws transparent and legislators honest should be demanded by the we the people. Wildlife Management SB 0017 Exotic animals. Support restricting release of exotic animals into the wild. Hunting/Fishing SB 0153 Disabled veteran hunting and fishing licenses. Opposed to new lifetime licenses HB 1036 Exemption from hunter education course. Opposed to new exemptions HB 1299 Animal hunting facilities Opposed to any hunting within fenced area HB 1448 Lifetime senior hunting license. Opposed to new lifetime licenses Water Quality SB 0113 Confined feeding operation approvals. Generally support improved water quality protections from excess nutrients, E coli and other pollutants SB 0118 Ordinances regulating fertilizers. Support local communities’ prohibitions on fertilizer pollution of waterways SB 0200 Environmental general permits. Generally support proper NPDES permit requirements to protect water quality SB 0202 Environmental approvals and other issues.Generally support for proper requirements to protect water quality SB 0236 Septic tanks and sewer systems. SB 0556 Confined Feeding Operations and CAFOs. Generally support for proper requirements to protect water quality HB 1134 Confined feeding operation manure. Generally support for proper requirements to protect water quality HB 1169 Soil and septic system education and research. Generally support additional

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2011 Indiana Senate Pro-Consumer Voting Records

Several bills are being voted-on right now. SB72, eminent domain for CO2 pipelines, SB71, hydrofracking, remains on 2nd reading in the Senate. SB102, tracker bill, remains on 2nd reading in the Senate. DUKE ENERGY is a large electric utility service for Indiana and has been in the news several times over the past few weeks for a range of issues: including Contractor says Duke took risks at plant and Utilities Back Bill to Cut Regulation and of course the newest report Dirty Energy’s Assault on Our Health: Mercury Citizens Action Coalition’s fact sheet (below) is about Indiana General Assembly pro-consumer voting records thus far.  It is important to note that legislators need to know what YOU think.  Please take this opportunity to send them your views, whether it is through email, personal letter or a phone call. FIND YOUR LEGISLATOR CLICK HERE: A few things to remember when writing or speaking to your legislator: 1) Be SPECIFIC on what you want to happen or your view on an issue – short and concise 2) Be nice yet firmly held in your beliefs – respect will get you further than a personal attack 3) Ask for their stance on the issue

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HEC's Environmental Policy for Waterways in 2011

Hoosier Environmental Council 2011-2012 Legislative Policy Guide http://www.hecweb.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/2011LegGuide10-3.pdf According to the 2010 Impaired Waters List, Indiana has more than 2,600 impaired waters that are unsafe for drinking and recreation. The following is a summary of information presented in the guide regarding water issues: Issue 1) Restriction unnecessary use of phosphorus in lawn fertilizers on turf grass unless it is TRULY needed.  This is the first issue discussed because lawn fertilizer has been linked to “dead zones” in Lake Erie, where over 50% of our fish from the Great Lakes come from! (pg 4) Issue 2) The Clean Water Act’s Anti-Degradation Policy was adopted by the Indiana General Assembly, but IDEM’s proposed rules do not meet this standard and must be improved.  Too many exemptions allow companies to avoid justifying their new or increased discharges.  There are several weaknesses in proposed rule so it needs to be strengthened. (pg 4) Issue 3) Confined Feeding Animal Operations (CAFO’s) in Indiana number over 3,000.  At 80% of these operations; hogs and dairy cows are confined by the thousands or chickens are raised by tens of thousands at a single facility.   These large scale operations lead to public health disasters like fish kills, and Salmonella tainted eggs, blue-green algae blooms.

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Primary's over…election to come

So politics are directly related to water issues….who gets the money and what issues will be addressed and which ones take priority?  Here is the 2009 Indiana State Senator Listing by District. (updated 3-25-10) Click on one to see the 1. District of your Senator 2. First / Last Name 3. Party 4. Office Phone Number 5. Email Address 6. City Represented (or surrounding areas) 7. Total campaign contributions that legislators accepted from Utility, Coal, Oil, or Railroad Corporations (www.followthemoney.org) 8. 2008-2010 Average Percentage of Pro-Consumer Voting (v/s voting big business) I thought you may want to know who should get the votes!

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D.C. Update

Washington D.C.  February 24, 2010 – Great Lakes Day Today Save Maumee Grassroots Org., Save the Dunes and Healing Our Waters met in person with representatives from the offices of: Senator Richard Lugar Representative Mike Pence Representative Brad Ellsworth Representative Andre Carson Representative Baron Hill Representative Mark Souder   Information packets were received by: Representative Peter Visclosky Representative Joe Donnelly Senator Evan Bayh Our coalition of groups from Indiana descended upon Capitol Hill to ask for support of Great Lakes Restoration Initiative funding to; aid in stopping invasive species (most notably Asian Carp), cleaning up toxic sediments, stopping polluted runoff, preventing beach contamination, restoring degraded wetlands and protecting fish and wildlife resources.  Congressional action is needed on several regional priorities. Too much time has been spent avoiding issues. Great Lakes Task Force – Great Lakes Alliance – Our Healing Waters – National Wildlife Association all had speakers to brief us on issues for Hill visits along with our own agendas.  It included state-by-state planning, lobbing refresher, and education about urgent issues facing the Great Lakes and priorities. Literally millions of citizens were represented at our meetings with lawmakers. Our group believes that congress should strengthen accountability, provide transparency, boost coordination

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Fact Sheet For NE Indiana

Fact Sheet – Understanding the Depth of Northeast Indiana Water Related Issues

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Save Maumee goes to D.C.

Welcome to the first post of Save Maumee Grassroots Org. Blog.  I am finished with the fact sheets for NE Indiana.  Bruce Allen and myself have received a scholarship through Our Healing Waters to lobby in Washington D.C. for Clean Water Week, February 22-25.  CLICK HERE FOR FACTS ABOUT YOUR WATERWAYS!dc-fact-sheet.pdf Water Quality Indiana Facts: Highest amount of toxic discharges to bodies of water among all states – more than 11% of the nations total (EPA, 2007) Indiana toxic releases to water decreased for the second year in a row- by 6.7 million pounds-  last year.  Indiana still leads all states in discharging pollutants and toxic chemicals into waterways. (EPA & IDEM) 16th highest in the U.S. for the number of people exposed to tap water with contaminants above acceptable limits, out of 42 states studied (National Tap Water Quality Database, 2005) The EPA limits certain pollutant discharges.  When a limit is not listed, it is up to the permit writer to decide whether the pollutant discharge will “cause, have a reasonable potential to cause or contribute” to exceeding state water quality standards.  A permit writer is not required to develop a case-by-case limit for a pollutant, (Enesta Jones EPA

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