EPA has announced that it is stepping up efforts on Clean Water Act enforcement. A plan "Clean Water Action Enforcement Plan" has been drafted as a first step in revamping the compliance and enforcement program. The plan outlines how EPA will strengthen the way it addresses modern water pollution challenges. These challenges include pollution caused by numerous, dispersed sources, such as concentrated animal feeding operations, sewer overflows, contaminated water that flows from industrial facilities, construction sites, and runoff from urban streets.
The agency intends to target enforcement toward the most significant pollution problems, improve transparency and accountability by providing the public with access to better data on the water quality in their communities, and strengthen enforcement performance at the state and federal levels. Elements of the plan include the following:
- Develop more comprehensive approaches to ensure enforcement is targeted to the most serious violations and the most significant sources of pollution.
- Work with states to ensure greater consistency throughout the country with respect to compliance and water quality.
- Ensure that states are issuing protective permits and taking enforcement to achieve compliance and remove economic incentives to violate the law
- Use modern information technology to collect, analyze, and use information in new, more efficient ways and to make that information readily accessible to the public.
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