Industry News

How Dilution of the Clean Water Act May Affect Treatment Chemicals Market in America

The Clean Water Act of 1972 has done a remarkable job in maintaining water standards in the US. However, a dilution in the amendment would lead to lower quality standards and lax enforcement, thus affecting major treatment chemical companies

The Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) has sued the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) for allegedly diluting the Clean Water Act. As per the CBD, dilution of the act “could potentially eliminate Clean Water Act protections for millions of acres of wetlands, which are critical to water purification, ecosystem health and habitat for hundreds of endangered species.” As per the current information, the matter is sub judice in court. Here is a look at what the CWA entails and its effects on the water and wastewater treatment chemicals market.

The Clean Water Act (CWA) was a set of sweeping amendment made in 1972 to an already existing act. The original Federal Water Pollution Control Act (FWPCA) was passed in 1948 and then completely re-written in 1972. The 1972 CWA, established the basic structure for regulating pollutant discharges into the waters of the United States, gave EPA the authority to implement pollution control programs such as setting wastewater standards for industry as well as setting water quality standards for all contaminants in surface waters, among others. The CWA also inculcated a permit system for any pollutant from a point source into navigable waters, and funded the construction of sewage treatment plants under the construction grants program. Along with all the above the CWA also addressed the critical problems posed by nonpoint source pollution. Severe punitive actions, may be taken in case of wilful endangerment, including a fine of up to $250,000 and/or imprisonment up to 15 years for an individual, or up to $1,000,000 for an organization, has ensured that the EPA has the teeth required to adequately punish reprobates.