On Wednesday, April 25 at 10 a.m. eastern the Senate Environment and Public Works committee will hold a hearing on the Waters of the United States Rule, more commonly known as the Clean Water Rule. You can watch the hearing live, here. To learn more about the Clean Water Rule, read our Frequently Asked Questions page. We’ll be live-tweeting the hearing, so join us on Twitter @healthylakes and check out our social media guide for the hearing. Of particular note for the Great Lakes region is that Sens. Kristin Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) and Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) are both members of the committee.
The landmark 1972 Clean Water Act took a major step forward in protecting the drinking water in the United States from pollution and toxins. However, starting with a Supreme Court case in 2001, the extent of the waters protected by the Clean Water Act began to become less clear. By 2006 (and a second Supreme Court case) it was obvious that something would be needed to clarify the extent of the Clean Water Act or streams and wetlands throughout the country–which millions rely on for drinking water–would go dangerously unprotected from pollution.