Clean Water Act Turns 40
3/20/12 - 4:54 pm
According to the EPA website, the Federal Water Pollution Control Act of 1948 was the first major U.S. law to address water pollution. Growing public awareness and concern for controlling water pollution led to sweeping amendments in 1972. As amended in 1977, the law became commonly known as the Clean Water Act (CWA). You can listen in to a free webinar tomorrow, The History and Evolution of the Clean Water Act. The 1977 amendments:
- Established the basic structure for regulating pollutants discharges into the waters of the United States.
- Gave EPA the authority to implement pollution control programs such as setting wastewater standards for industry.
- Maintained existing requirements to set water quality standards for all contaminants in surface waters.
- Made it unlawful for any person to discharge any pollutant from a point source into navigable waters, unless a permit was obtained under its provisions.
- Recognized the need for planning to address the critical problems posed by nonpoint source pollution.
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