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Jennifer Rubiello,
Environment Florida

Attack on Clean Water Rule

For Immediate Release

“President Trump's order turns the mission of the Environmental Protection Agency on its head: Instead of protecting the drinking water sources for 1 in 3 Americans including nearly 2 million people here in Florida, he is telling the EPA to stop protecting these waters from polluters. It defies common sense, sound science and the will of the American people." Jennifer Rubiello, Environment Florida

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Today, President Trump signed an executive order instructing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to withdraw its defense of the clean water rule in federal court. Jennifer Rubiello, state director for Environment Florida, issued the following statement:

"President Trump's order turns the mission of the Environmental Protection Agency on its head: Instead of protecting the drinking water sources for 1 in 3 Americans, he is telling the EPA to stop protecting these waters from polluters. It defies common sense, sound science and the will of the American people.

"Clean water is vital to our ecology, our health, and our quality of life.  We depend on our rivers and streams for safe drinking water.

"That is why more than 800,000 Americans -- including more than 1,000 business owners, local officials, farmers, and health professionals – all supported the historic clean water rule. In fact, 79 local officials and 234 businesses  recently joined Environment Florida Research & Policy Center and its sister organizations across the country on amicus briefs in defense of the Rule in court.

"Finalized in 2015 with widespread public and scientific support, the Clean Water Rule restored protections for thousands of waters across the country – including nearly 15,000 miles of Florida's streams, which feed waterways like the Hilllsborough River and help provide drinking water to nearly 2 million Floridians.

Polluters and their allies have sought to overturn the Clean Water Rule in court. And the Trump administration announced its intent to dismantle the Rule in a statement shortly after inauguration day. Today’s executive order instructs the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to move forward with a new rulemaking that would remove protections restored under the Clean Water Rule. The order also instructs the agency to stop defending the Rule – even to withdraw the extensive brief the agency already filed with the 6th circuit court of appeals."