Attorney General Should Support Clean Water Rule

These waters once again lack clear federal protection from polluters

By Emma Thompson

The Clean Water Act turned 43 this past weekend, but our own Attorney General Tim Fox has given the Clark Fork River and other beloved Montanan streams and waterways the opposite of an anniversary present.

Here in Montana, we cherish our rivers as places where we can swim, boat, raft, and fish during the spring and summer months. The only way we can continue to utilize these special resources is if we protect and safeguard the streams that feed them and the wetlands that help keep pollutants out. That’s why the EPA’s new Clean Water Rule is so important: it would finally restore protections under the Clean Water Act to 63 percent of Montana’s streams. These streams not only feed rivers like the Clark Fork, but also help provide drinking water to one in three Montanans.

Unfortunately, heeding the call of attorney general Fox and polluters, a federal court has now temporarily blocked the Clean Water Rule. In other words, thanks to Fox, these waters once again lack clear federal protection from polluters.

Here in Montana, we should be doing everything we can to protect clean water. We urge attorney general Fox to reverse course and withdraw from this misguided dirty water attack.

Emma Thompson

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