EPA Reaffirms Efforts to Address Nutrient Pollution

Brian GermanEnvironment, Water

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is strengthening efforts to address nutrient pollution in water supplies. A new policy memorandum solidifies EPA’s commitment to working with partner groups to further advance progress in reducing excess nutrients in U.S. water systems. Three strategies have been outlined for advancing efforts better protect water quality. EPA will be deepening collaborative partnerships with agriculture and bolstering efforts to support states, Tribes, and territories in driving nutrient reductions from all sources.  EPA will also be invoking Clean Water Act authority to drive progress and prompt innovation and collaboration.

Nutrient Pollution

“Nutrient pollution is one of America’s most widespread, costly, and challenging environmental problems,” EPA Assistant Administrator for Water, Radhika Fox said in a press release. “At the same time, promising innovations, creative partnerships, holistic One Water solutions, and unprecedented opportunities to invest in clean and safe water through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law have the potential to rapidly accelerate progress on nutrient pollution. Our nutrients memo is a call for scaling up the innovative approaches being used by farmers, ranchers, water agencies, local municipalities, industry, and communities to make progress.”

The Accelerating Nutrient Pollution Reductions in the Nation’s Waters memo is guided by five governing principles. EPA’s Office of Water will be advancing equity and environmental justice, building and fostering partnerships, investing in data-driven solutions, supporting innovation, and scaling successful initiatives. EPA will also be offering technical assistance and other means of support to assist partners implement nutrient reduction strategies. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law provides dedicated resources to help accelerate some of the efforts to address nutrient pollution.

“USDA is proud to partner with EPA, farmers, ranchers and others to reduce excess nutrients in America’s waters,” said Under Secretary for Farm Production and Conservation Robert Bonnie.   “Effective nutrient management not only improves plant health and productivity, but also reduces excess nutrients in surface and ground water as well as emissions of greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change.”

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Brian German

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Ag News Director, AgNet West