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October 18, 2022
Contact: Antoinette Barber, 202.331.2820

Washington, D.C. - As leaders in drinking water, the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies (AMWA) applauds the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Clean Water Act, which has been critical for protecting our nation’s drinking water sources. One of the first modern laws to specifically address environmental water quality, the Clean Water Act helped pave the way for subsequent federal laws, such as the Safe Drinking Water Act.

“Preventing pollutants from entering drinking water supply source water is a complex task involving point and nonpoint sources,” said AMWA CEO Tom Dobbins. “The Clean Water Act recognizes that it is much more effective to control point source pollutants at the source, where they are highly concentrated, than it is to remove them at the consumer’s expense after they have entered a water supply source.”

In recognition of the law’s golden anniversary, AMWA was proud to participate in EPA’s celebration of the law during today’s event along the banks of the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland, Ohio. It was in part the public outcry over industrial pollution of the nation’s water bodies, a problem exemplified by the river catching fire numerous times, that spurred Congress to approve the Clean Water Act fifty years ago.

Looking ahead to the next fifty years, AMWA urges EPA to continue to use the authorities under the Clean Water Act to fully manage point and nonpoint source pollution.

“Through requirements such as the Total Maximum Daily Loads, National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System programs, and Nonpoint Source and CWA 319 Programs, the Clean Water Act will continue to be a valuable tool for keeping drinking water affordable for all Americans,” Dobbins continued. “We look forward to EPA building on this legacy by utilizing the law to improve water quality by keeping harmful chemicals and other pollutants out.”

About AMWA

For 40 years, the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies has been the nation's unified and definitive voice for the nation's largest publicly owned drinking water systems on legislative, regulatory, security, sustainability, and utility management issues.