PORTLAND – The Environmental Protection Agency says Oregon needs to get its “house in order” to protect water quality after completing a review of the state’s water policies.
A review of the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality found that key parts of the state’s water policies are not consistent with federal EPA regulations because they do not adequately protect water quality, human health and fish and wildlife degredation.
Read the full report here: EPA Review of Oregon DEQ
The review found that Oregon’s policies don’t adequately protect water quality from becoming worse than it was when Congress passed the Clean Water Act in 1972.
The review stemmed from a lawsuit that overturned the EPA’s 2004 approval of Oregon’s water quality standards, won by Northwest Environmental Advocates in 2012.
“This very thorough EPA review vindicates our position that the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality has long failed to meet federal requirements for water protection,” said NWEA Executive Director Nina Bell.
The EPA said Oregon should have its current “house in order” before it allows new pollution that lowers water quality.