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From Katherine Baer, Director of Science and Policy at River Network

Hello River Friends –

Hope everyone had a good 4th of July – a follow up on the Clean Water Rule and asking everyone for some input on Federal Budget toolkit development:


River Network is developing a toolkit to help advocates effectively fight back against proposed federal budget cuts – including analysis and communications resources. To do this, we need your help to find out more about which federal budget items are most important to you for your community and rivers, and where you’ve already identified good resources. Please give us a hand by filling out this quick google form by July 13th.


Okay – as everyone probably knows by now, the Trump Administration announced plans to repeal the Clean Water Rule and then start a process to replace the Clean Water Rule with something based on Justice Scalia’s opinion in the Rapanos case, a much more restrictive and less protective approach. The current Clean Water Rule was based upon a long and thorough process in accordance with the Administrative Procedures Act and based on extensive public input and independent scientific review. This proposed repeal and replace maneuver, if successful, will weaken protections for streams, wetlands and drinking water for roughly 1/3 of all Americans, and leave waterways vulnerable to more pollution and dumping. There will be a 30 day comment period starting soon (while there are requests to extend the comment period, don’t count on it) – Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2017-0203.

Please take action to protect clean water and the Clean Water Rule – here’s what you can do:

A) What you can do if you have no time – sign your organization on to this group letter organized by the Clean Water for All Campaign by July 14th here and raise the issue via social media all ready to go from Clean Water Action.

B) What you can do with a little more time – above, and ask your members to take action by either sending them to an existing action alert like this one from National Wildlife Federation or use one of these templates from the resource toolkit to create one of your own.

C) With a bit more time – consider working with partners to submit an op-ed or LTE on this issue – great examples are available for use here from the Clean Water for All Campaign and to tailor for your state or watershed, see state based fact sheets at protectcleanwater.

D) For those of you with more time- And for those of you with more time (or stellar summer interns!)- please consider writing your own, more specific letter and creating a local or state-based sign-on. Feel free to use the sign-on as a template and tailor with information specific to your area and watershed.

General resources on the Clean Water Rule: Clean Water Rule Repeal resource kit (thanks to Clean Water Action and Campaign for Clean Water), NRDC blog by Jon Devine, the Clean Water Rule repeal in the context of the larger war on science in the New Republic and op-ed by Montana TU.

Thank you!

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About Friends of Alewife Reservation

The Alewife Reservation is a unique natural resource for the communities of Belmont, Arlington and Cambridge and home to hundreds of species, including hawks, coyotes beavers, snapping turtles, wild turkeys and muskrats, the reservation is a unique natural resource for the community.
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Friends of Alewife Reservation works to protect and restore this wild area and the surrounding area for the water quality, native plants, animals and over 90 bird species with paths for walking, running and biking, recreation, and for classroom education and research. We regularly steward and preserve the Reservation area for wildlife and for the enjoyment of present and future generations.

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